regrets


 I had a few free moments and was scanning my Facebook feed when this video popped up:



And it really made me stop and think...we all have at least one regret in our life.  One thing we wish we had done, or had done sooner, that might have changed the whole course of our life.  Or that thing that we did that we wish we hadn't, that we bury in a deep dark place and pray no one ever finds out.

For years I had a long list of the latter.  Choices I made with high school boyfriends, choices I made to fit in with my group of friends, choices I made in what I worshiped.  When I finally made the choice to become a follower of Jesus I was ashamed of them, especially since my first church was full of older people that seemed to have been living the "right" life all of their life. (I am sure that they didn't see it that way and that this was more due to my perception than reality!) So I put on the "good girl" mask, jumped in to a servant position in the church and tried to earn that "right life" feeling.  I wanted to be "good enough" for God.

Unfortunately, I never accomplished it.  You see, we can't be "good enough" for Him.  The Bible says that ALL fall short of the glory of God, ALL have sinned.  (Romans 3:23)  That little 3 letter word includes you.....and me.  Even if you have been a Christian all your life.  And for a long time that verse was really difficult for me.  I wanted to be a perfect reflection of Jesus to the world, and instead my mirror was cracked and stained, and even missing pieces in some places.

The good news is that God extends grace to us, unmerited favor.  You don't earn it, you can't earn it, but He gives it to us anyway.  And His grace is enough.  His strength is made perfect in weakness, our weakness.  (2 Corinthians 12:9)  Now, that isn't to say we have a free license to run out and intentionally give Him opportunities to display His strength because we selfishly want to wallow in our weaknesses.  But when we go to Him and lay our weaknesses at His feet, He can turn them around.  He can use them for good.  (Romans 8:28)

And as for our past, when we give it to God, when we stop hiding it in those deep dark places and pull it out into the light, He isn't going to shake His head in disappointment and turn His back on us.  Instead our God says this:

he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
~Psalm 103:10-13 

 Those past regrets, He has already erased them from the blackboard.  Isn't it about time that you did too?  No, you may never be a perfect, sinless reflection of Jesus.  But you can let go of the past and look to the present.  How can you reach out to those around you that are still struggling with their regrets?  What can you do to show them that they are loved and valued just as they are?  So many are hurting, won't you share the all encompassing love of Jesus with someone this Valentine's day?

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