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Many people come to Christ daily but battle with the memories of their past life which probably was rough, painful or traumatic. I have seen many people who struggled to live their new found faith in Christ just because a terrible past life comes hunting: I have seen some who got delivered from occult involvements, terrible abuses, sexual lifestyles and other dehumanizing struggles battling to live the Christian life because of the height of what they had been through. For some of them even when God has forgiven their sins, they find it hard to forgive themselves. So the devil takes advantage of the struggle, self condemnation or guilt to hinder their growth in the things of the spirit.
But the Bible teaches that, he that is in Christ is a new creation, old things are past away and behold all things are new. No matter what a person has done, as long as the person has not grieved the Holy Spirit, he can be saved.

So the questions is, how can one overcome the challenges of past life in Christ Jesus?
  1. You need to  be sure of your salvation/conversion experience:
  2. You need to become abreast of your rights and privileges now that you have been saved, and they include peace, protection, prosperity, power over sin and evil, presence of God always, etc.
  3. Total severance from former bad companies, habits and lifestyles  that can entice you back to your old ways.
  4. Connecting to fellowship of true worshipers of God
  5. Submitting under anointed mentor or leadership in God's house.
  6. Commitment to service in God's house.
  7. Build a consistent personal alter where you commune with God in prayer and study the word of God.
Discussion for the above points
  1. Assurance of salvation is highly needful in the life of the believer because negative thoughts may come asking you, are you really saved? Do you really feel saved? You don't need to feel saved, you just need to know you are saved. The just shall live by his faith (Romans 1:17). Psalm 18:3 says, "I will call upon Jehovah, who is worthy to be praised: So shall I be saved from mine enemies". Luke 7:50 says, "And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace". John 3: 17 says, "For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through him." And Acts 2:47 says, "And it shall come to be, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved."
  2. You need to become abreast of your rights and privileges in Christ. Like we say in Ride The Tide, when the true worth of a thing is not known, there is a danger of it being under priced. In Christ Jesus, we have been offered so many benefits; life everlasting, joy, peace, progress, safety, glory, prosperity, dominion, just name them. But you need to be exposed to these by the word of God through anointed teachings, personal study, reading of anointed books and so on. The word of God says in Romans 12:2, "And be not fashioned according to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God." After salvation, your spirit man is saved (reborn) but your mind is still filled with so many things that only the word of God can knock off. When you expose yourself to atmosphere of God's word and presence consistently, transformation begins to take place in the mind ( those negative thoughts of past life, struggles and imaginations are cast down); the will of God unfolds, goodly values are imbibed and your life begins to bring praise to God. 2 Corinthians 12:2 captures it well, "But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord the Spirit." What we behold with unveiled faces is the word of God. Unveiled, because we have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
  3. Total severance from bad companies or lifestyle. In the Bible, Dinar, the daughter of Jacob, got raped (humiliated) because she went checking out daughters of the land (bad companies) (Genesis34:1-2)The truth is that the easiest way to backslid is to keep keeping the bad companies through which you were sinning before. Examples are: going back to former sex mate, may be thinking you can save the person as well; going to seek for help from former gang mates; going back to gossip mates (if you are in the midst of a gossip, no matter how saved you are, your own gossip will come out to balance the equation). The second thing in this point is, restitution. When you get saved, seeking peace from those you hurt when you were a sinner, is a sure way to stamp your identity in Christ helping you to totally disconnect from worldly lifestyle or identity. Bible teaches restitution; it is an avenue for transition of a new believer into his new identity; it's a way of declaring your new identity to people who used to know you as a sinner. However, it should be done with wisdom and better with the consent of leaders over you so as not to cause more problems for you in case of delicate past offenses.
  4. Connecting to fellowship of believers helps in stirring up God's presence. It revives God's presence afresh in your life. In an atmosphere of God's presence anything is possible: miracles, healing, distributions of gifts of the Holy Spirit, destiny restoration are obtainable. We are Spiritual beings, and there is that innate unsatisfiable longing to worship God; and life abhors vacuum. Bible says in Proverbs 27:17, "Iron sharpeneth iron, So a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend," When we gather in worship, a sharpening process takes place in our spirits as we minister to each other. In a generation filled with several diversions and projections from the pit of hell, one cannot but find himself in the right fellowship. Negative songs, entertainment, news are being projected everywhere, all targeted to defile the soul of the world. May be that's why we that would live in the end of end times were admonished in Hebrew 10: 25, "not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh."
  5.  Submitting under anointed leadership or mentor-ship: Bible teaches in Hebrew 6:12, "be not slothful in business but be ye followers of them who through faith and diligence inherit the promise." When a young believer submits himself to leadership and  mentorship, he is made to flourish under the spiritual covering of his spiritual head. Impartations are received on this platform which enables the young believer's acceleration in destiny. In my undergraduate days, I had many senior brothers in the Christian fellowship who I liked the grace upon their life, so I went to one of them to mentor me. I didn't really know what I did. Whenever I got opportunity to minister either in church or in fellowship, I will minister powerfully and manifest some graces even as a young believer and older believers would marvel. On the day of graduation of this mentor of  mine, he called me and prayed a farewell prayer for me. After the prayer, I came to my room and was undressing when I had an open vision and I saw myself on the back of my mentor and he dropped me on my two legs on that revelation and said some things to me. From that day I discovered what mentorship does to a believer: it gives you access to higher graces and enable you to achieve what the fathers achieve.
  6. Commitment to service in God's house: there is tremendous blessing in service. A true servant of God can never be stranded. There are blessings one cannot access unless you are in God's service. In Exodus 8:1, Bible said, "God spoke to Moses, Go in to Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus says the Lord, Let my people go that they may serve me." You see, God cannot let his servants remain in oppression and bondage; His servants serve Him in freedom and liberty. In Exodus 23:25, Bible says: "And ye shall serve Jehovah your God, and he will bless thy bread, and thy water, and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee." Blessings flow in the place of service. Sickness is far away from his servants. Everything flows. Check out true servants of God around you (not hypocrites) and see if God's blessing is not resident. I don't mean trials can't come but they are more than conquerors. Even in the midst of challenges, joy of the Lord is evident because God is their hope.
  7. Build consistent personal alter: When everything else fails, only your personal revelation of God will sustain you. Cooperate prayer is not enough to sustain a believer  in this world. Personal communion with God in prayer and study of God's word is highly important for victorious christian living. Our Lord Jesus would go off to a solitary place (his alter) while it is still dark in the morning to pray. Sometimes He stayed all night praying and sometimes he spent days in the wilderness fasting and praying. Personal alter is paramount if one is going to carry God's anointing and presence daily. It is needed to keep the a fire daily burning. The Christian life of a believer is as strong or as weak as his personal alter. In Leviticus 6:12, Bible says, "And the fire upon the alter shall be kept burning thereon, it shall not go out; and the priest shall burn wood on it every morning: and he shall lay burnt-offering in order upon it, and shall burn thereon the fat of the peace offering." You see, we are to keep re-firing ourselves in God's presence daily (I recommend each morning before any other activity). When we study God's word, we are in essence, burning wood that keep us on fire for God. Our lives should be daily surrendered to the Cross of Christ like the burnt offering.


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