After reading Matthew Malin’s post Severing the Chains of Regret:  Is it Possible?, it reminded me of times in my own life dealing with regrets and prompted within me a desire to shed more light on the subject…

Before I do, I will also share in one of many regrets of an attempt to impress a young girl as a middle school teenager.  I was riding my 10 speed bike and peddled as fast as I could by her as she watched from upon my porch.  I realize at the last second upon reaching the  6″ curb that I must brake = I flipped completely head over heels with bike following in tow over me into a heap as I landed hard on my back.  Yah, so much for that stunt.  I wonder what she thought about it?

And one more for good measure is my first date as a 17 year old taking a girl to a movie.  I have no recollection of what the feature show was called or what it was about. But what I do remember is taking her home, getting out of the car, gently placing both of my hands on the sides of her face, and the good intention of giving her a kiss on her forehead out of respect before saying good night.  However, she looked up to kiss me and I kissed her nose.  Yep!?  I attempted once more and the same result occurred.  Nope!  Not doing that again.  The next day looking at the doorway (as I sat in my seat in an empty classroom awaiting for its start) there she appeared and stood waiting for me as if she still cared for me.  Try as I might have wanted to -regret and embarrassment took over and I didn’t move let alone respond.  After a few minutes, she turned and walked away.  Needless to say, it was the first and last date I had in high school.

How to Respond to Our Regrets

I wholeheartedly agree with Matthew’s take on regrets (author of Confessions), that it factors into everyone’s life at some point if live long enough to deal with it, lose from it, fail in it, and have to face it. And he is right that JESUS is the answer…

HE is the answer to our dilemma of regret (past actions of our own doing or performed against us by others, present guilt or shame, and future handling of its weight:

  • pressing upon us
  • repressing within us
  • suppressing all positive forward response from us
  • and/or oppressing over every facet of our lives

 

We may not forget our regrets, yet we may still be forgiven, experience breakthroughs,  and thus find freedom to finally move forward into further maturity…

JESUS forgives to rescue our lives, forgives to restore our lives, and forgives to redeem our lives…

Peter experienced a rescue from JESUS when he came to believe and trust in HIM while following HIM.

Peter experienced a restoration after failing in faithfulness to JESUS (forsaking HIM 3 times) in moments of anxiety, confusion, fear, darkness, and weakness -yet gaining a deeper level of forgiveness after JESUS returned to him to continue the relationship with HIS faithfulness, HIS hope filled reunion, and HIS perfect love given.

Peter experienced a redemption when given the renewed responsibility to spread the Good News of salvation ordained by JESUS knowing HE had risen from the dead and still loved and valued him beyond the failures and regrets of guilt and shame he had harbored…

Our first and foremost response is to turn to HIM for forgiveness:

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.  John 3:16-17

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.  1 John 1:9

HE forgives to rescue:

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  Romans 10:9

For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. Romans 10:10

As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” Romans 10:11

For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile–the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:12-13

HE forgives to restore:

Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, LORD, are good.  Psalm 25:7

“Do not be afraid; you will not be put to shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood.  Isaiah 54:4

HE forgives to redeem:

For the Lord GOD helps Me, Therefore, I am not disgraced; Therefore, I have set My face like flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.  Isaiah 50:7

Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.  Psalm 34:5

And so, I share this because HE is real; HE is faithful to respond and rescue when turning to HIM by grace through faith; HE is able and willing to restore hope to anyone’s soul through mercy and compassion; HE fully redeems anyone’s life changing the whole trajectory of one’s path onto the straight and narrow with HIS Light and encouraging Word and over time casting out fears with HIS perfect love that never fails…

With HIS forgiveness in being rescued, restored, and redeemed we may become inspired and motivated to tell others about what we’ve:

  • discovered to be the Way out of darkness and regret
  • found to be the Truth toward walking in HIS Light and back into the land of the living after each regret
  • experienced to be the new Life granted with purpose and with vision beyond any and all regrets

 

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “BUT THE RIGHTEOUS man SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.” Romans 1:16-17

With forgiveness, all of us may continue to keep fighting and overcoming…

As you sit here after reading this, JESUS stands at the door of your heart and knocks.  Will you respond?  Regrets and/or embarrassment doesn’t have to keep you immovable like in a chair in an empty classroom as an awkward and lonely teenager nor keep you from the greatest gift of HIS unfailing love and forgiveness that may be yours for simply turning to HIM and asking for it.  HE doesn’t walk away, but is waiting for you still -here… now…

For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation. 2 Corinthians 6:2

HIS forgiveness is HIS key to our hearts:

  • with faith in HIM as our response to know
  • with hope toward HIM as our realization to grow
  • with love from HIM as our reward and to do unto others owe…
  • with HIS Word as our reason into others sow…
  • with HIS Living Water refilling our cups as a reservoir to overflow into channels of HIS grace, mercy, and compassion to show…
Comments
  1. Confessions says:

    You definitely said it better than I could have. You made the point of regrets being what keeps us from moving forward. Incredible how the devil uses our past to keep us from our future! All it takes is recognizing and submitting to the one who can erase it all. Praise the Lord!

    Liked by 1 person

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