Over the years, I’ve gone back and forth about Taylor Swift. There are days I love her music and days I wish that the radio would never, ever, ever play one of her songs again…like, ever. But then there are days when all at once one of her lyrics jumps out and takes me by surprise.
I had been listening to “Begin Again” on repeat in my car for nearly two days straight when this lyric took me by surprise. You would think that after two days on repeat none of the lyrics would surprise me, but this one hit me over the head. Maybe I was confused by the “him” she was talking about, but I finally got it. New guy and Tay-tay walked to her car and she almost brought the ex up when new guy shared something personal and she wanted to talk about that instead, and for the first time, what’s past is past.
There is some part of me that has been reprogrammed in the last few years to spill all of my secrets up front. All the crap from my past, the sins I’m ashamed of, the details of break-ups and near engagements? Yup, those should come out now, because if a guy wants an out, by goodness, I’ll give him plenty. But Tay-tay’s lyrics made me think. What if the past really is past? Sure, it is there, and it has made me who I am today, but why not focus on today? The stuff from my past, the things I’m not proud of, the easy outs, who says that has to be brought up on the second date? What’s past is past. Today, right now, I want to talk about those movies you watch with your family every Christmas. I want to know what your favorite color is, who your Confirmation saint is, and your favorite childhood memories. The past is past, and in time, when it is the right time, we’ll talk about it. We’ll go there. The dark secrets will come out. You’ll take the out, or you’ll stay. But either way, God will be in the middle of all of it. He was in the middle of my past – keeping me safe in the midst of my stupidity, guarding my heart even when I didn’t want to – and He’ll be in the middle of my future, whenever those tales I’m not so proud of come out. All in His good time.
So, in a way, I’m thankful for Taylor Swift for reminding me that the past is past. It is over. It only has the power to haunt me if I give it that power. And I’m thankful for the invitation to be here, where ever here happens to be. I’m thankful that time moves forward, heals broken hearts, and restores hope for a brighter future. For the first time, what’s past is past, and I for one, am ready to begin again.