A few years ago I talked with a man who told me how difficult his life was as he grew up. He witnessed his own brother being murdered, and he told about how his girlfriend had died at the prime of her life. He said, "As a young man, I faced so many negative things and got so bitter that I had suicidal tendencies. I felt as though I couldn't live with what had happened to me. I couldn't get past the past. I couldn't move forward." That's a pretty dark place to be in. "But one day," he continued, the expression on his face brightening, "I woke up and for some reason I began to cry out to Almighty God. I began to say, 'God, help me to move past my past and all this bitterness! Help me take hold of a great future!'"
When he began to call out to God, he said he suddenly got an incredible urge to start running. Though he didn't initially understand why he had that desire, he put on his tennis shoes and jogging clothes, went outside and just began to run. "Every day when I would run," he recalled, "I would imagine myself shutting the door to the dark past and running toward my future. With every run I saw God in front of me helping me." That's how he practiced closing the door to his past. He said, "As I would reach out and press forward, I was able to accomplish things I had never thought possible. I went back and finished college, then I went on to medical school. Now I practice medicine and have thirty-five employees at my clinic."
Just as this man was able to overcome his challenges because he called out to God, you can press past anything that's trying to hold you captive, whether it's anger, bitterness, or unforgiveness. David said, "In my distress I called upon the Lord…and my cry came before Him, even to His ears…. He brought me out into a broad place; He delivered me because He delighted in me" (Psalm 18:6, 19). If there's anything from your past that's keeping you from your dreams, call out to God and ask Him to help you move past it. He will bring you into a broad place because He delights in you!