I try very hard not to let what other people say or think bother me. I know who I am, who I've become, and even more than that God knows who I am. He knows my heart, he knows my mind.
But what do people honestly think they are going to achieve by drudging up someone's past? Especially someone who has found their way back to God and done a total 180 in their life. Yes, I have a past - who doesn't? And really, my past isn't as bad as people like to think it is. There are certain areas that were worse than others. I'm not proud of the things I went through. But the fact is many people go through patches in their lives. The other night my friend asked me what my best memory was from growing up (referring more to high school days, doing things with friends, etc)... honestly, I couldn't really think of anything. Looking back now I am just thankful I made it through that time in my life and that I was able to move on from it.
I guess I can look at it this way - if all someone has to talk about is my past to try and say something bad about me, then I'm doing pretty good now. I know my life is good now, because God is in it. I have a wonderful husband and children who I adore. I think part of it is jealousy. I turned my life around, I did a total 180 to the point I have a husband who I can say is faithful to me and I am faithful to him. And I can say we both know for a fact we always will be. We have made a covenant, before God, to remain true to each other through thick and thin, until death. Unlike a lot of couples these days, we DON'T take our vows lightly. We did not enter into marriage without an understanding of what we were doing. While we've gone through some tough spots (lay offs, financial struggles mostly) we've gone through them together and come out better on the other side.
I also have two AMAZING, beautiful, smart children. Despite the circumstances one of them came from, they are two of the best things in my life on this earth. Certain people try to judge every move I make... but I know the only judge who matters is God. He knows, and I know, how much I love my children, how well I care for my children... I'm not perfect by any means, but the fruits are already starting to show. I care so much about who my children become. My goal is that they become wonderful, well rounded adults. I don't have a preference on what kind of job they get, who they fall in love with, nothing like that. But I will push them to do well in school so that when they get to that point they can choose any path they want.
Because you know what matters to me? Their FUTURE. One of the things I teach my children regularly is that people make mistakes, but we should always love them anyways. Like Jesus would. What's past is past, and we can't change it. But we can do our best in the present and build a better future.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right, persevering, and steadfast spirit within me. Cast me not away from Your presence and take not Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Psalm 51: 10-12