Learning To Unlearn: When Lessons Include History

History as a subject fascinated me because I could predict the future of a country or event based on its story. Even childhood biblical narratives held the same premise in my eyes–one could almost tell where a character would fail, or what side of the war would win.

Now I’m older, and life isn’t so black and white. I’ve seen train-wrecks turn into inspirational examples, and order explode into insanity. Each event and person teaches me what I soon, and almost always forget, which is that one can’t judge a book by its cover.

I thank God that life’s like that. It means that those who are up will come down, and the trodden will rise. It means that those who enjoy a fun-filled youth based on beauty and charm will spend a lonely adulthood, and the ones rejected while young for not fitting in, a prosperous future. It means that all things get a turn at the wheel. Most importantly, it means that one cannot bless or curse what only God can control.

Studies prove that holding on to things and people lead to broken records of our lives. Nature itself sets the tone on malleability from the changing seasons to water’s fluidity. The most poignant biblical story supporting the error of clinging to what’s gone is shown in the story of Lot’s wife who looked back and turned into a pillar of salt as her family escaped God’s judgment on Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19:26).

The message is clear–move forward, or get stuck. We can’t see the future if we’re afraid to walk into it.

Something interesting about moving forward and learning from the past has to do with the concept of repetition. Certain personal themes seem to repeat themselves, and each time presents an opportunity to revise our reactions. These tell us of our personal growth, or lack-thereof, and set the tone for future events.

When looking ahead and in moving forward, look out for repetitious events. They pop up now and again to show your emotional and spiritual health, and from there you can decide whether you’re in fact changing the course of your path or walking straight into a future predicted by your history.

Learning To Unlearn: When Lessons Include History

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