The things we have done in the past can seem like a beast breathing heavily on our neck trying to devour us. Our previous choices take the form of a dragon looking to scorch us with reminders of what we have said and done. It may be that the past isn't distant enough for us to feel safe and we may not believe we have truly defeated it. It may also be that we have tried to bury it deeply and panic whenever someone walks over that ground. This beast forged out of our history can seem too overpowering to tame.
There is only one way to slay that creature once and for all and it doesn't come from our strength. We find it through genuine confession and God's forgiveness. Then God releases grace that we have not earned which gives us the weapon we need. He generously covers us with mercy that keeps the enemy at bay even though we deserve defeat. It is a battle that is won and a creature defeated without any effort on our part but surrender.
We need to remind ourselves that the dragon is slain. Our past sins and shame cannot hold us back once God has given us life. Now we can move forward and step confidently over the carcass of our past without fear. God's forgiveness bestows us with the courage to bury the past where it belongs and let that dragon be dead for good.