Everybody regrets something at some time in their lives. Some regrets are without great consequence; things like — I forgot to buy milk and bread when I was at the store, or I haven’t yet returned that phone call, or I still haven’t cleaned out the garage. We may regret all of those things, but none of them will cause anything more than some aggravation. We may be annoyed with ourselves, but we won’t feel that our lives are ruined.
There are other regrets that cause us to be somewhat disappointed. Perhaps you didn’t take that job offer, or you opted out of college, or you passed by on an opportunity to move somewhere you’ve never been to before. We may regret we didn’t take those chances. We didn’t step out on a limb, and now we feel stuck in a rut. Again, we may be annoyed with ourselves, but usually, we get on with life and make the best of the decision we made.
The above regrets are things that everybody faces. It’s life and we just move on. However, there are regrets that can definitely strum deep chords of pain. These regrets have lifelong results that affect us all the days of our lives. Perhaps we married the wrong person, and we are stuck in an unhappy marriage. Perhaps we were unfaithful to our spouse. Perhaps we were so busy with our jobs that we ignored our children when they were young, and now they want nothing to do with us. Perhaps we dipped our hands in the office funds jar. Perhaps we embarked on the wrong career path, and we don’t know how to start over.
I have actually talked with people in my travels, who have confessed to all of the above. As I would listen to their tales of regret, I could see the depth of anguish etched on their faces; their eyes lacking peace. There was a sense of hopelessness about them. They regretted the choices they made, and told themselves that, to live in misery was what they deserved.
Here is some wonderful news. Jesus died to give you victory over your regrets. If it’s forgiveness you need, He longs to pour forgiveness into the blackened areas of your life. He desires to lavish His love upon you. He waits with baited breath to ease away your pain. If it’s hope for tomorrow that you need, He wants to put you on a new path that leads to inner peace and joy. He loves to see His children happy, walking in hope. How do we get what we need from God? Ask Him. Tell Him how you feel about the regrets that live in your heart. Ask Him to take them away. Tell Him that you resolve from now on to seek His leading before setting out on a path of your own making.
Many times in my talking with people, they have shared their regreets, and then they have continued to tell me that they won’t ask Jesus to forgive them; they won’t ask Jesus to help them, because they feel they don’t deserve it. If that is you, may I remind you, that it doesn’t help to be your own judge and jury. You don’t have to give yourself a life sentence. When you do that, you’re not helping yourself or those around you. If regret has dumped you in a hole of gloom — don’t dig deeper! Crawl out! Look up and see the hand of Jesus ready to lift you up! If you do this, I absolutely, positively, no doubt about it, guarantee — Jesus will make the gloom of regrets fade away, and He will make all things new. It’s a speciality of His — all because He loves you with a passion. So, come on — look up! See Jesus reaching down to pull you up and set you onto a good path.
“The strong right arm of the Lord is raised in triumph. The strong right arm of the Lord has done glorious things. I will not die; instead, I will live to tell what the Lord has done.” Psalm 118:16-17