While I was finishing up my associates degree, I was very close to graduating with honors. This term means that a student did so well that they place a gold cord around their shoulder as they graduate to show that had a GPA (Grade Point Average) of 3.5 or higher. I worked really hard in all of my classes, but I ended up graduating with a 3.49 GPA. I was stunned. I was only 0.01 point away from having that gold tassel when I graduated. I was sad about it, but I decided to allow that set back to be motivation.
I went on to work towards my bachelor’s degree in Biblical studies/Christian leadership. During the times when I struggled to keep up with the demands of the semester, I kept looking at that 3.49. There were many days where I would go over my work thinking about those three little numbers. After two years, I was relieved to receive my Bachelors degree with not one but with two gold cords. It was almost like the one that I had failed to receive was given during my second graduation.
I tell this story because it is all about perspective. How do you view your past? Do you use it as motivation? Nathan Feuerstein (NF) sings a song that says, “You can carry the past on your shoulders, or you can start over.” It can be easy to overthink a failed relationship, job, or moment. You have to learn from your mistakes and proceed forward. Living forever in those moments is not healthy. That is what is so awesome about God. Whatever we face and whatever we go through, we can start over.
When the nation of Israel was traveling to the Promised Land, God provided them with fresh manna every day. God described it as, “bread from heaven” (Exodus 16:4). For us today, God gives us fresh grace every day. Christ is our bread of life. Everyday meditate on how good God is.