Embrace Your Past
One of my favorite television series that I watch faithfully is “Mad Men”. Besides my being in love with the retro vibe of the show, all of the cast members are perfect for the roles they each play and you can relate to each and every one of them good or bad, which gives for brilliant viewing. One of the main characters “Don Draper” the Creative Director and a Partner of the advertising firm, played by the steamy Jon Hamm, is a real mystery, which makes him even more attractive…Sorry, I slipped away there for a moment. Don Draper had a very tough upbringing, he grew up in a brothel (which could be the reason he’s such the lady’s man). He was also treated badly by his step mom. He hated his past so much, that even his name is a lie. He took that name from a soldier that he was in combat with who died. Only two people and now his children knows his true identity, a woman in California who happened to be the real Don Drapers wife, but was now like a sister to him, his ex-wife whom he finally had to tell and now his children were shown where he grew up in the shows final episode for the season. I believe Don Draper not only got tired of keeping up with all the lies, but he saw how his lies and dishonesty was affecting his children as well as all his relationships.
My reason for bringing this “Mad Men” character Don up is because there are a lot of people walking around hiding or trying to forget where they came from or the experiences they had to go through in life. Because of the pain, many people deny their past, ignore their past, discount their past, regret their past or resent their past. They revise their past and make up stories because they are happier dealing with the lie than the pain of the past. I grew up in a foster home, not because my mom didn’t want me, but because my mom took ill and could no longer care for me and dad was gone. Luckily the home I went to I knew the family, but I can see how easy it is to lie about your past, especially when people are always questioning you about it.
However, if you are in denial, God can’t use your experiences for good. Maybe you didn’t grow up with the greatest of parents, maybe you weren’t all that great in school, maybe you weren’t on the cheerleading squad or became the prom king or queen, maybe you weren’t the football or basketball captain, so what? Those are your experiences…own them. God can use every experience in your life for good, but you have to stop running from them and embrace your experiences instead. I learned that lesson and trust me it is true. I won’t lie, at times my past made me bitter, I am human after all. However, it has also made me strong, capable of taking care of myself, wiser, independent and I would like to think a good parent. Many of us experience similar or maybe even the same things in life, but if we keep being in denial about our experiences we can never heal, nor can we ever grow or learn from them and then become a blessing to someone else.
Live for now, but embrace your past by owning your experiences. You never know who in your future you will help because of your past.