THE PAST or FUTURE?

Everyone is aware of Patrick Henry’s primary contribution to the history books was the phrase "Give me liberty or give me death," but he also made another statement that appears in a number of quotation collections.

He said, "I know of no way of judging the future but by the past."

Repeat this before a group of people and you'll see many heads move up and down in agreement. It has the feel of good common sense.

Be careful, though. This saying might be true when applied to politics or history or investment strategies, but it provides a lousy foundation for developing relationships. And it certainly doesn't reflect the way God relates to us.

God gives a chance to let go of the past and start over — each and every day. Jeremiah wrote, "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." (Lamentations 3:22-23)

God doesn't judge our future by our past. He didn't do it with David or Moses or Peter or Paul or countless other Bible characters. Neither does he do it with you and me. He does not treat us as our sins deserve. (Psalm 103:10)

With God, every day is a new day.

A good way to begin each day with God is to remember that you've just been given brand new mercies — the chance to start the day with a clean slate.

It's also a good way to start the day with others. God doesn't allow your past to prevent you from a having a great future, so let's give the same gift to others.

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