Don't look back
Looking back can be a detriment to our progress. Sometimes it can even trigger us back into a habit. Where we were before is not where we are now. We become different people every moment of our lives, because we have more moments and more experience behind us.
It is really hard at times to live in the present, but that is what we can control. Right now. We cannot control our past. What has happened, has happened and we must move forward, hopefully to become a better person.
It is easy to beat ourselves up for things that we have done in the past, or for things that have happened to us in the past. Satan likes us to dwell on our imperfections and mistakes. He likes us to think that we have no worth at all.
But we do have individual worth. In Doctrine and Covenants 18:10 it reads:
“Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God.”
You have worth. No matter the past mistakes you have done, you have worth. You are not a sum of your mistakes. You are more than your flaws. You are a precious son or daughter of God. He loves you. He helps us to move forward in life.
To be able to move forward in our lives, we must overcome our difficulties and mistakes by turning to the Savior. We must repent and not turn back to them. Sometimes this takes a huge mental, emotional, and physical effort.
Another way we must move forward is by not living in the past. Perhaps we miss the good times when life was so happy. Perhaps we miss times in our lives where we were full of joy. We need to remember that we cannot go back to that point. We must live now. This is the time that we have.
Similarly to looking back, we must not wait to act by saying that in the future I will do something. Or by saying that when I graduate, get a job, get married, have a family, go to college, finish this project, I will be able to do something to improve my life.
A Waiting Period
There should not be a waiting period to living life or to becoming better people. We can do this now as we turn to the Lord for help and change little things in our lives. We must not wait to become better individuals. In Alma 34:32-34 in the Book of Mormon, it reads:
“For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.
And now, as I said unto you before, as yea have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity; behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed.
Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world.”
Our Heavenly Father helps us to get past our mistakes. He sent His Son so that we can repent of our sins and have them not harrow us up anymore. We can be freed from our past mistakes. I love this quote by Gordon B. Hinckley:
“We can improve today without waiting for tomorrow.”
Our lives can be better every moment that we live them. It may not be an easy thing to do, but it is definitely worth it. You are not chained down by living in your past. You are free to move forward.
Quality life is found as we live in the present with knowledge of where we want to end up in our future. We can make changes now to become better than we are. This quote by Marvin J. Ashton really summarizes this concept:
“A quality life is God’s greatest wish for us. Life is to be lived well in whatsoever circumstances we find ourselves. There should not be a waiting period…”
Is there a waiting period in your life? What is causing you not to live now? Even when we are experiencing hard times in our lives we can strive to do what is right and live a quality life. Henry B. Eyring said this of the tests in life:
“The greatest test of life is not to endure storms, but to choose the right while they rage. We are spirit children of a Heavenly Father.”
It takes faith to move on from the past and to choose the right while we experience hard times. Our Heavenly Father and Savior, Jesus Christ are there to help us. Let us improve each moment by living in the present with a knowledge of how our living will help get us to the point that we ultimately want to get to.