Learning from Your Past


(in German accent?)
This is Father Mike. Hello? Hello. This is … (laughs) Hi, my name is Father Mike Schmitz. And this is Ascension Presents. All of us are called to—at some point—assess the past so we can look forward to the future. That’s what new years do, that’s what birthdays do. That’s what anniversaries do. That’s what seasons do. They give us a time to stop, to look at the past and and to stop and to look in the future. But I think when it comes to the past, a lot of us are tempted to do two things with the past. Either we’re tempted to ignore the past or tempted to live in the past. So many of us kinda bury our heads in the sand. We just keep living, we just keep moving forward. We just say, “Nope I can’t stop, I can’t look at the past,” because why? Because I’m scared of it. Or because I just don’t have any time to look at the past. Or for whatever reason, we tend to ignore the past. Or, we become gripped by the past, like our past then ends up defining us. Our past ends up kind of ruling our lives and rules our thoughts, it dominates us and so we live in the past and can’t move forward because if you’re living in the past or even if you’re ignoring the past there is no clear way forward; you have no future. In fact, if you’re ignoring or living in the past you’re not even living in the present well because to live in the present means, I’ve looked at the past and I’ve lived in the past but now I’ve learned from the past. And I think that’s what ultimately the Church and the Lord is calling us to do: Go back over the last year or over the last week over the last day, and to look at it and assess it. In fact, this is the wisdom of the Church when it comes to what Ignatius of Loyola, St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits called the consciousness examen, that throughout certain parts of the day, or typically at the end of the day you go back over your day and say, OK, God where were you today? Where’d you speak to me? And where was your grace? Basically, where did I say yes to you? And then you go back over again and look at it and assess it and say, now where were you speaking to me and I did not respond to your grace in a way that said yes and I, or I ignored your grace in a way that couldn’t move forward. And then where you need to repent, you repent. That’s what we need to do with our whole lives. Right? At the turn of the year or the turn of the season to stop and look at the past to assess it and then to say, okay, where do I need to repent? Where was God calling me forward or he was calling me not to do something and I didn’t move forward or I didn’t do that thing he was asking me to do? Because unless I learn from the past I will never be wise, because that’s what ultimately wisdom is, it’s truth times experience. It’s truth times “I’ve looked at the past, I’ve assessed it, and now I’ve learned from it, so I can move forward into the future.” But it also might be that you get trapped by it. Right? By looking at the past. That’s one of the reasons that people ignore the past it’s because they think, if I go back there, I’m gonna get stuck and I’m gonna live in the past. If that’s the desperate time, then it calls for desperate measures. And here’s the desperate measure. Here’s something that happened to me a little while ago. Last week. Last week I was doing this teaching for this big group of people in our diocese about the Eucharist and I was so excited for this and I was just … I mean it’s the best thing in the world Right? Jesus in the Eucharist Jesus, the best thing in the world and outside the world-He’s the best one. Anyways, you know what I’m saying So, it’s about the Eucharist and I was so excited for this and I think it kinda bombed I mean, I think it was OK, but that night and the next morning at adoration—I was in adoration in front of Jesus in the Eucharist—and I’m like, God I’m so sorry. Like Jesus, I’m so … I feel like such a moron. I’m so sorry that I failed you. And it’s interesting because in that moment, I’m looking in the past, right, and I was assessing it and I was repenting where I needed to repent and I was like, OK, you know what next time—I learned from it— I need to make it shorter, I need to do this, I need to highlight this. So I had looked at the past, I had assessed the past, I had repented where I needed to repent and I had learned where I needed to learn but I was stuck there. And Jesus is funny, Jesus in the prayer there was like, “OK, just shhh. Up here. Like, look at me.” I’m like, “Yeah, I know Jesus. I’m trying to look at you but I feel so badly. I can’t believe that I bombed this whole thing.” And he’s like, “Shh. It’s not about you. It’s about me.” And I’m like, “I know, everything is about you and I failed you. I was supposed to be there for you and I didn’t do it.” And he’s like, “Shh, shh, shh!” (laughs) And Jesus was, he was shushing me quite a bit in my prayer that day. And he’s like, “Shh! “Up here!” I’m like, “Yeah, I know ‘Up here’. Lord, I know that it’s all about you and I know that it’s not about me.” And he said, “Well, then, stop talking about yourself. Laugh at yourself, how ridiculously self-obsessed you are at this moment.” When you look over your past and you live there, you’re just obsessed with yourself. “Well, no I’m not. I’m taking my sins seriously.” No, no, no. Taking your sins seriously is repenting.
You’ve already done that. “Well, I’m trying to learn from it.” Learning from it is, “Well, here is what I’ve learned.
Now I am going to apply it right now so I can move forward.” I’m not laughing at my sin or my failure. I’m laughing at myself. so that I can love Jesus. I’m laughing at myself so I don’t live in the past. but I can live in Christ and look forward to the future. This, I think in so many ways, is what St. Paul is talking about in Philippians Chapter 3. Philippians Chapter 3, St. Paul says, I haven’t gotten there yet. There’s a destination – it’s Jesus. And I want him so badly. I have not reached maturity. But he said this, “Just one thing: forgetting what lies behind, but straining forward to what lies ahead, I continue my toward the pursuit of my goal the prize of God’s upward calling, in Christ Jesus.” Now St. Paul is not saying he forgot the past and said he didn’t learn from it, he’s saying I’m forgetting the past in the sense that, listen, I’ve repented of what I needed to repent of, I’ve learned what I need to learn, and I am moving forward. I’ve learned from the past.
I am NOT living in the past. And if I ever get pulled back there,
I’m going to laugh at myself because I need to live in Jesus today. From all of us here at Ascension Presents,
my name is Father Mike. God bless. And have a Happy New Year! Or a happy… summertime or happy… uh… Thanksgiving or whenever you’re watching this. Just have a happy “that thing”. Happy Day! Happy Wednesday.

100 thoughts on “Learning from Your Past”

  1. Fr. Mike, I just saw you talk at the Seek Conference in San Antonio. Amazing talk. Thank you so much. I would be honored and humbled to be able to meet you in person. I am working the Augustine Institute booth in the main lobby. if you schedule allows, please stop by. Thank you so much, Father!

  2. ( #AscensionPresents !) Thank you for this video, it really uplifted my heart. I was struggling with a sudden deep depression along with anxiety building up. I felt trapped in my whole body. I pleaded to God to help me to get out of this state of mind, as it's been draining me for the past few days. Many times I was tempted to resort to old destructive coping mechanisms in order to feel a sense of release from this emotional paralysis. Since I know how much God loves me, I was able to not act upon these temptations. Frequently today, after saying a train of Hail Marys, I would feel a period of rest in my heart, but soon again that heaviness would return. I wanted to direct my thoughts more towards the Lord, and watched your video. The minuet u talked about sitting in adoration and Jesus shushing you, a fountain of genuine giggles burst out of me like a dam, and I felt my heart become clean.
    I'm not catholic, but hope to be soon, thanks to your videos. I'm still dreaming for the day I finally get to see the Lord in the Eucharist! A part of me is a little terrified hehe. I mean standing before God face to face! BOOM! mind blowing!
    Thanks to your guidance, I was able to overcome periods of doubts regarding my religious vocation to become a Poor Clare of Perpetual Adoration. Haha if people doubt that God works through people's lives, or the fact that he works miracles, they only need to look at my life. I went from an atheist heavy metal chick to future, cloistered, bride of Christ. Only God can work such a profound change in someone's life.
    Thank You for saying yes to your vocation, God Bless!!!
    -Amen Lord!

  3. Happy New Year from Lublin's seminary Father! Some of us are really enjoying your vids and learning a lot from it . God bless.

  4. Awesome, awesome, awesome ! Thank you very much. This message is so much needed for a lot of people, and this message I needed too.

  5. This really helped me because I often think of people "living in the past" as dwelling on serious wrongdoings. But, as I have a terrible issue with time management and procrastination (which leads me to not have any time for God), I realized this totally applies to me! I have to stop feeling so frustrated at my bad habit because I have repented, now I only have one focus: not to not procrastinate, but to start doing and focus on Him. That probably didn't make sense, but either way, great video!!

  6. #askfrmike ok, so me and some of my other Catholic teen friends we're discussing this topic, "kissing before marriage." what is your view on it? I would really like to know. we usually discuss everything on a very high and deep level, but we're actually quite stumped when one of them asked this question. none of us have ever dated before. I would be so so grateful if you could answer this. thank u!

  7. Hi Fr. Mike! Could you talk about the spirit of detachment? I've recently learned and heard about it and find it beautiful and would love to learn more from you! When is it detachment versus holding no emotional value for anything? I wonder where the healthy line of detachment lies.

  8. Thank you so much Fr. Mike for this! Literally this very day I NEEDED to see this video! Not only do I live in the past, I dwell on it and is bounded by deep regret. I had a wonderful, spirit-filled Catholic Conference weekend and the very next day suffered a major setback that I was praying about. Can you give advice regarding regret and how to break free from it? Thanks and God bless!

  9. #AskFrMike What is the purpose/future of hell from the unconditional love of the Father. Why or why not pray for the souls already in hell. Could you differentiate the difference between rationalizing what God could do vs what God should do through the eyes of faith and hoping against hope as Mary did in the miracle of the Immaculate Conception? THX

  10. Thank you Father Mike! Mother Teresa reminds us that only joy within our heart can fight evil! Thank you Father Mike for having joy within your heartโค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ

  11. Can you do a video on cussing and using "dirty" language?
    Is it really a sin to cuss?
    Should I be confessing using bad language in the confessional?

  12. Fr. Mike said "Happy Wednesday" …and indeed, I'm watching this on a Wednesday evening…(this is not coincidence, it's divine)!!

  13. Philippians 3:13โ€“14

    13 Brethren, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

  14. wow i like the fact that there are so many people like me with questions and u answer them so simple thanks be to God for your work you do it with all the blessings that God has given you and in this time of grief i am going through you have helped me to look forward to my journey in life i hope iam able to please God and its been very hard but i know ill try as much as i can thank you for your time and teachings they do help .

  15. How can there be 6 people who don't like this???! Come on!!! Love Father Mike ๐Ÿ™‚ such an inspiration for Christiansย  ๐Ÿ™‚ย  Please don't stop Father Mike, you are needed SO much to share God's Word! Woo Hoooo! Lov'in JESUS!!!

  16. Thank you so much for this Fr. Thanks be to God for you! Through you, God has said something to me.

  17. #askfrmike my husband cheated and lied to me for 9 years of our marriage. Every single time he's been caught in a lie or in a extramarital relationship he apologizes and says he's a changed man. But disappoints me all over again. How can I trust him after so many lies and heartbreak? I'm really trying but I'm not sure what to do anymore. And also, what can he do to help himself with the lying and cheating?

  18. Okay, not to be a weirdo, but I was bugging out when he said happy Wednesday and I watched this for the first time on a Wednesday.

  19. Thank you, Father for your boldness to know and love Jesus and Mary as intimate as you do and care enough about us to share that truth.

  20. God bless you Father Mike. Thank God for your sincerity, passion, gentleness, enthusiasm, encouraging nature, wisdom conveyance and pastoral motivation. You are impacting so many people. May the Lord equip you for every good work and energize you with his magnificent power. Our Lord King Jesus loves you!

  21. Hello father. Your videos make my day. I make sure to watch at least one of your videos before leaving the house. Your videos have strengthened my faith. I am proud to be Catholic. I am able to learn more about my faith and I will improve my way of life to become a better Catholic.

  22. God Bless You Padre!
    P.S. I recommend the booklet: A Call to Souls: Words of Our Lord from The Way of Divine Love of Sister Josefa Menendez

  23. I have never seen a Catholic Preist that was as fun-loving as you come across. Keep up the good work!

  24. You're right, Padre……you can't move forward . I couldn't, I was stuck, until I was able to forgive not only my violator or myself … I kept slipping back in my mind until the Catholic Charismatic movement thru faith healing , which I was dragged to by my Mother .
    Didn't realize Jesus was with me the whole time I was suffering……Forgiveness in my situation is what it took; not a psychiatrist.
    Thank you for all you do for us. You clarifying things so well . Peace

  25. What an amazing gift u have from our lord jesus christ……….. i was so tormented by my past…… but ur talk gave me so much hope i felt a lot better….. praise to our lord

  26. Some of your videos triggered me watching for the first time…Going through healing process of CPTSD (PTSD) and trauma…You are helping me although I have other professional supports also. PTSD is not well known within every professional counseling service although I am learning I'm not the only one…thank you.

  27. Want I want ask Fr.about DIVORCE cause many people leave. The Church cause nowadays we live in a world with so many challenges especially in families

  28. Thank you Father … I always say the Past is the Past for a reason … itโ€™s gone and we either dwell in it and are self absorbed or we learn from it and are enlightened ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ™

  29. STOP BEING OVERLY ATTRACTIVE! In all seriousness though. Iโ€™m not Catholic anymore. Iโ€™m more… spiritual than religious now. But I do enjoy some of your videos. Thank you and keep posting. For all of us. ๐Ÿ˜Š

  30. Dear fellow brother in christ:
    What about externally imposed inflections of morbidity by separatist interests intent on manipulationally objectifying me for THIER false belief of political neccessity, idealism: which; actually insists apon, and enforces a social corruption…
    Yet; because of THIER clout, reactionality actually makes me look like the bad guy for trying to do God's work…?
    Spiritual wickedness that believes it is P.C…
    ESPIONAGE CONFESSIONALS YHA RIGHT…?
    My names on the arrest record so it's not a secret…niether is the fact that the arrested tried to kill me…
    Or the fact the government holds me down and asks me to persist knowing it will only result in my death…what then…?
    In other news;
    I have watched sleeper cell coverups at the expense of the children saying it was for the greater good world wide…
    They… poloticians…stole the gold and silver that was to buy the noc lists to save the children from THIER mind control…! Just like Eugene Douglas Slovers home for boys did to me…
    I can't keep it a secret anymore; but, talking to in detail might interrupt THIER repentant recovery…hopefully considering I've been shut down on that level since 2009 when I realized I was forgetting my purpose because I was preoccupied with my life…anyway thanks for listening…
    Signed Sincerely confused and losing hope…
    May the peace and or wrath of the lord be with you father or brother Mike.
    God bless.
    P.s everyone Mengela was the inventor of the zika virus targeting the south american genetic line which someone was nice enough to invent crisper to correct…THANK YOU ON THAT ONE BYE THE WAY GOD…!
    In closing…
    For all of you that would rather see me dead for saying this…
    Maybe use this time to reconsider your moral stance…i never cared about head hunting for me it was setting those kids free from the mental prison I also knew all too well.
    MY PRAYER REQUEST IS FOR THOSE CHILDREN OF MY APTLY TITLED GENERATION X PROGRAMMED AGAINST THIER WILL WHO'S PERSECUTORS ARE MOST LIKELY DEAD OF OLD AGE SO THOSE NOC LISTS FALLING INTO COMPASSIONATE HANDS IS THIER ONLY WORLDLY HOPE…
    I PRAY THAT THEY BE SET FREE FROM MENTAL BONDAGE…๐Ÿ›

  31. I never get tired of your goofy stuff. So many Priests in the past have been so serious and this made it hard for me to relate. Thank you for being super REAL and hilarious ๐Ÿ˜‚

  32. Catholicism is an amalgomation religion – a mixture of Greek and Babyloniam mythologies with Christianity. The result is something that is not Christian at it's core. It places Mary higher in authority than Jesus and teaches that you can only get to Jesus through Mary. They make Mary into a deity.

    The origin of the Roman Catholic Church: When Roman Emperor Theodosius (379-395) decreed that Christianity was to be the official religion of the empire, thousands of pagans flooded into the churches in Rome and brought their pagan beliefs and traditions with them. One of those ancient pagan beliefs was a place of purification (Purgatory) where souls went to make satisfaction for their sins. Another was the idea that men went to an underworld where he earns freedom back to the world of the living. This idea existed in ancient Babylonia and is seen in the Epic of Gilgamesh, where Gilgamesh pays a ferryman for passage into the underworld from which he hoped to return. It is was also present in ancient Greek mythology as Hades. Pagans who flooded into the church overtook the Christian churches in Rome and formed the Roman Catholic Church, which incorporated many of these pagan practices and beliefs.

    In 606 A.D the Roman emperor Phocas named Pope Bonaface III the universal pope over all of the churches. This is the origin of the imagined authority of the Roman Pope over Christianity. Two groups of Bible beleiving Christians, the Waldenses and the Albigenses, were the fore-runners of protestantism. They were heavily persecuted by Rome. Whenever Rome could find no evidence of herecy in someone, they would simply wrongfully charge them with being a Manakian – one who believed that there is a god of good and a god of evil, in order to justify their persecute of them.

    Over 40 Christian communities were established by the year 100, many in Anatolia, also known as Asia Minor, such as the Seven Churches of Asia. None of this was Roman Catholicism. By the end of the first century, Christianity had already spread to Rome, India, and major cities in Armenia, Greece and Syria, serving as foundations for the expansive spread of Christianity, eventually throughout the world. This was almost 400 yrs before the formation of Roman Catholicism, thus Catholicism is not the "original church" or "original Christianity". Catholicism was formed by a mixing of Greek pagan gnosticism and polytheism with Christianity.

  33. Pray for me and for all Catholics being harassed and hacked on the media. My comments have been censored, by evil hackers, and children traffickers, I busted them trafficking children to Satanists and paedophiles, on my YouTube timeline. My life has been threaten by the most evil people you can't possibly imagine. God Bless you, Father Mike Schmidt, Amen ๐Ÿ™

  34. Past mistakes become lessons. When we repent from the heart, God forgive our sins, according to our Faith

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