Many feel regretful at the end of the year for work undone, objectives unaccomplished and opportunities lost or even past situations which cannot be changed. Faith Child is not immuned. However, regrets should not control us and upset us so that we become paralyzed from taking further action.
We may have regrets from different areas of life. Here are just a few examples…
- our childhood. Perhaps you resent your single parent upbringing or the preferential treatment given to a sibling or that you wished you had what other kids had.
- our finances. Have you become over-burdened with debt for education or home or a car or something you bought which you could ill afford?
- our relationships or maybe even our marriage partner. Are relationship issues bringing you down and you wished….. Though divorce is so common, its effects on each person has not diminished. Divorce is not simply like choosing the wrong car to buy and later getting another one…no divorce often makes each person involved feel a sense of failure for whatever went wrong in the relationship.
- our children. Perhaps you wished you had a child, or more girls, or more boys. Are you regretting that your child is suffering from a sickness or incapacity?
- our performance or stewardship - at work, church, witness.
There are people who look back on their life and say that although they made some bad choices, they live with no regrets. Are you wondering if you will be able to say that and if that is even a Biblical principle?
Regrets are often times the result of sin in our life. Have you specific regrets that are the result of sin or unwise choices in your life? Have you been divorced or had to file for bankruptcy or no longer speak to your children?…if this is the case; it is almost assuredly the result of some sin. It could be , not even your sin but the sin of someone else which has left you with regrets.
Romans 3:10 says, “There is no one righteous, not even one.” We all mess up. This verse is one of many that shows us that we all mess up all the time. In Romans 7 Paul seems frustrated with the fact that even when we try to do the right or good thing, we simply cannot do it. Because we fall short, we have to often face difficult consequences. There is a penalty for our sin. Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
We should be thankful to God who shows us mercy even when we don’t deserve it. David knew this and in Psalm 4:1 says, “Answer me when I call to you, O my righteous God, Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer.” God is patient with us even when we stray (or follow other gods). The God of the Bible is the one true God that loves us and cares for our every care and hurt. He does not delight in seeing us go through hardship or pain. Often, that is where and when we grow spiritually and learn to live each moment reliant fully on God. As with the writers of Scripture, we should not be afraid to tell God what is on our hearts. God can handle our thoughts and our prayers even as we all will have things happen in life that we wish were different (regrets).
But do these regrets control us? Do I allow my regrets in life to smother my Christian witness? Hopefully the answer to this is no.
Before Jesus was betrayed and crucified, He told His disciples that all 12 of them would fall away and deny him. Peter strongly opposed Jesus and tried to correct him by saying “even if all the others fall away, I won’t”. Peter denied Jesus 3 times before the rooster crowed, just as Jesus said. Did Peter regret this? Absolutely!!! Did he let it dampen his witness? Not after Jesus restored him on the beach in a beautiful story in John 21. Surely, Peter never forgot this sin and shortcoming but he did not dwell on it. He later preached the gospel of Christ with the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. He should be our model in handling regrets.
We may never forget our individual regrets in life but how do we respond to them?
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our regrets and sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. 2 Corinthians 7:10
Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead Philippians 3:13
Today, are you being blinded by regret and forgoing opportunities for blessings and service? It is time to begin anew as the new year dawns.
Now, take stock of your regrets, bring them all to Jesus. Cast your cares upon the Lord, confess your weaknesses and rise to walk in the power of His might. When we are weak then we are strong in Him. Faith Child, rise up and walk. That is what He said to the lame man. Do not be made lame spiritually by the regrets that bind. Be unfettered in the Name of Jesus! Amen.
Response : Dear Father, as a father pitieth his children, please pity us who have regrets especially at this time of the year when we feel so hopeless as this year runs out. Thank You for being our hope. Thank You for your Word which tells us that You care and will forgive us for those regrets which have become our stumblingblocks and caused us to be inactive and not accomplishing Your will through us. We are weak and need Your strength to help us rise up and walk on to Your glory. Please forgive and lead us by the hand into new opportunities and challenges in the year ahead. Thank You Lord for we ask in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
P.S. If you are not a child of God, have not accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, and know you need to change your relationship with God.
1.You can by faith accept Jesus, confess your sins, accept His forgiveness and pray the prayer below.
2. After becoming God’s child you may pray the prayer above for handling your regrets.
Dear God, I come to You knowing that I need You because I cannot walk on in life on my own. I am weak and subject to weaknesses that lead to sin. Please forgive my sins. I accept You as my Saviour and please turn me around from living a sinful life, and be my Lord and Father. I ask in Jesus’ Name. Amen.