Do you live with a lot of regrets today? I can certainly tell you I have many. I started thinking about all of them this week and asked myself the question, “How can I live the rest of my life without more regrets?” The answer was quite easy… live through our Lord and Savior and as He lived!
Living with regret can be a painful ordeal for all of us. They often affect our decisions, actions and our words for fear of repeating a past mistake overwhelms us at the time it pops into our head and we may say or do things in haste simply to avoid the experience all over again.
I trust in God. I believe He is with me and sends His Angels down to walk beside me every day of my life. In this knowledge, and through His lessons, I know I can get past my regrets and move forward without repeating the same, foolish mistakes.
Have you ever had the circumstance where you missed an opportunity to say something but you just missed the chance? What about that guy, or girl, in school that you really did like, but you just never could gather up the courage to tell them? Is that something you regret today?
Proverbs 15:13 – “A person finds joy in giving an apt reply; and how good is a timely word!”
“An apt reply.” Do you get what God is telling us here? Your words should come at the right time, truthfully and fitting for the conversation. Not in haste and not without thought.
When you have something on your mind and in your heart, don’t miss out on the opportunity. Say what’s on your mind, at the right time, but remember, our words can have a great impact on whomever it is we speak with and also how we say the things we must.
1 Peter 3:9 – “Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.”
Our God wants us to speak our minds, but carefully. He wants us to be truthful and say the things we must even though they may, in some way, be hurtful at the time.
You ask, “what do you mean by that?” Have you ever told a lie? Didn’t it eat away at you for a long time? How hard is it for you to remember what you said and how will you be able to keep up with this “story” that you told? Wouldn’t it have been easier to simply speak the truth, without harsh words? The truth is easier, and the pain of truth goes away much faster than the pain of a lie.
In speaking our minds, with caution and compassion, we will never regret the things we’ve said, or didn’t say, any longer.
Do the Right Thing
How about the times when you could have done something for yourself, acted differently or helped another person in need of assistance but you just didn’t do anything? How about that elderly gentleman at the store the other day who struggled with his groceries while trying to find his car? Did you, not only offer, but jump in and grab his bags? If so, congratulations… you’ve done the right thing! If not, don’t you feel the least bit sorry about it? Doesn’t that indecision weigh on your mind knowing what you should have done?
What would Jesus have done? How would He had want you to act in a situation such as that?
Colossians 3:17 – “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
When we do the right things in life, those that we know we should, we will never have that feeling of regret that we knew we should have done something differently as God would have wanted it so.
Treasure Your Family
This is pretty important, don’t you think? Our family is with us from our beginnings. Sure, we’ll grow up; move on with our lives and do whatever it takes to survive in this harsh world but, in the end, isn’t your family the ones who are always there?
Growing up, I had struggles with my Father. I disagreed with my Mother and went off on my own to build my world… sometimes not remembering the lessons of my parents.
Proverbs 1:8-9 – “Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching, for they are a graceful garland for your head and pendants for your neck.”
We are taught by God to listen to our parents, understand their experience and wisdom and not misunderstand what they are trying to teach. It is so important not to resent our parents for something they’ve said or done that you might not believe in or fully understand the meaning of.
Despite what you may believe, our parents have great wisdom; our brothers and sisters have lived through ordeals we may not even understand. Keep them all close and have no regrets when it comes time for God to call them away from us.
Love Your Enemies
I know, I know… this one is a little harder to handle. After all, they’re our enemies, people against us and may even want to bring us harm. Why should I Love my enemy?
Luke 6:35 – “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.”
Jesus taught his Disciples, “What reward is there in Loving those who already Love us?” That’s easy… Love those against us… turn the other cheek and you may find a new friend, again, without regret.
Sounds selfish doesn’t it? God doesn’t think so…
Proverbs 19:8 – “To acquire wisdom is to love oneself; people who cherish understanding will prosper.”
I think modern psychology today would tell you it’s truly harder to Love anyone else when you don’t even care about yourself. Look at you today! You’ve accomplished much; you’re here, listening to God’s word; you do good deeds for other people in need.
You may have someone on your arm; a Mother and Father that Love you dearly… you have a Glorious God in Heaven that looks down upon you with great Love and Joy; a Brother in Christ that sacrificed himself that you might live… how then, can you not Love yourself as all these that Love you?
Understand Failure is Not an Ending
Too many of us think we’ve failed when we haven’t accomplished our goal, or we aren’t worthy, and we stop trying. This is not a lesson God has taught us.
Proverbs 24:16 – “The righteous may fall seven times but still get up, but the wicked will stumble into trouble.”
We may be criticized for our mistakes, but God forgives us, why let a little bump in the road be your downfall… use it as a lesson, God will not abandon us!
2 Corinthians 4:9 – “We are persecuted, but God does not leave us. We are hurt sometimes, but we are not destroyed.”
Say what’s on your mind; speak the truth and speak with compassion. Let your words be heard by those that need to hear them and may you never regret not having said a word or told a lie to cover another lie.
Do the good deeds. The simplest little thing to you, could be the thing that brings sunshine into another person’s dreary day. I’m not asking you to wash their car and scrub their house; only to pick-up their keys if they drop them; hold the door and allow someone to enter before you knowing you did the right thing.
Love your family. Whatever grudges you may hold, drop them now. Re-kindle what may have been lost in your up-bringing understanding you cannot change the past but you have the ultimate power of making a better future.
Be kind to your enemies. You don’t know their stories and you can’t feel their pain. Be the stronger one and know you have gained favor in the eyes of our Lord.
Love yourself… if a great and glorious God Loves you so, so much… Love and respect yourself as well. This is as God would want it and, in Loving yourself, you will bring much more Love to others.
Understand failure is a lesson, not an ending. With every little tumble you have in your life, look for what God is trying to teach you and understand it just wasn’t what he had planned for you.
Go with God; be good to one another; always stay humble; always be kind… God Bless!