Think about your High School career. Did you have one of those guys who did something really stupid that has followed him ever since? Usually these things are not very good and I'm sure after sobering up the individuals are pretty sorry they did it. Some things just stick with you, whether you want them to or not.
I was reading in Mark 4 the other day and told the story of Jesus going to Simon the Leper's house.
At this point, Simon was no longer a leper, if he was no one would have gone to his house. Jesus had healed him so it should have been, Simon the post-leper or Simon the used-to-be-leper.
I wonder how Simon felt when people referred to him by the most horrific time-period in his life? Leprosy, back then, was a terrible thing. No known cure (except a miraculous encounter with Jesus). No one would touch you or barely speak to you. You had to move out of your home and the city and live in Leper colonies. No one would visit. This was a horrible disease that affected the nerves and it stunk and people thought they could catch it so it was lonely and you just kind of waited to die.
Imagine for a minute if everyone called you by something that represented a period of discomfort or embarrassment in your life. Let me give you a few examples;
Corey the hemorrhoid sufferer.
John the incontinent.
Sarah the diarrhea girl.
(yea, I know, just trying to make a point)
Strange how we remember people for the worst things. Even though Simon was healed, cleansed, restored, he was still remembered for something he desperately wanted to just forget.
That's one of the amazing traits about Jesus. He doesn't remember. When He talks about you He speaks of you in terms of what you can be, now what you were. Who you are in relation to Him, not what you did apart from Him.
Hebrews 10:17 - Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.
Psalm 103:12 -as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
You may have done some pretty stupid stuff in your past. It's doesn't matter. Jesus doesn't remember who you were He knows who you were destined to become.
Throw off those old titles in Christ and embrace a new life. A clean life.