Thursday, 26 May 2016

Hello, my name is... Regret

Hello, my name is Regret
I’m pretty sure we have met
Every single day of your life
I’m the whisper inside
That won’t let you forget

- From 'Hello, my name is' by Matthew West

As Matthew West's song says, regrets are the whisper inside that won't let us forget. That won't leave us. That won't give up on constantly reminding us of our failures.

Dictionary definition of regret
Regret: feel sad, repentant, or disappointed over (something that one has done or failed to do).

I think there isn't a single person in the world that doesn't have a regret about something. I have regrets. I often lie in bed and think back over the day and kick myself about things I did and things I failed to do! 

But the question is - are regrets healthy?

Because sure, it is good to make mistakes and learn from them. But isn't there a point where it becomes unhealthy to obsess over our mistakes and cringe over our actions? If so, where is that point?

As is always a good idea when we have questions like this, let's take it to Scripture.

2 Corinthians 7:10
For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.

There is definitely a time and a place for godly grief and godly regret. If we sin, we should not continue in an unremorseful state of mind! Our sin should be properly regretted and confessed to the Lord. 

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

But after that regretting and confessing - what then? Well, we are cleansed from all unrighteousness, as 1 John 1:9 says the Lord is faithful and just enough to do.

Psalm 51:8-9 “Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that You have broken rejoice. Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.”

He hides his face from our sins and blots out all our iniquities. Psalm 103:12 backs this up, going so far as to say that he has removed our transgressions (sins) from us as far as the east is from the west! That's a long way. 

God doesn't remember our sins. He takes them away and they don't count against us any more.

So what should we do?

Should we continue in our regret and annoyance at ourselves because of our sin?

You know what I think? I reckon that if God forgets our sin, maybe we should, too. 

I'm not saying that we can continue in our sin, forgetting the consequences and not learning from mistakes we have made. I'm saying that we should stop beating ourselves up about our past mistakes and just get on with our lives.

Philippians 3:13
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...

There we go. The key of it all, I think. Forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead.

I don't think that constantly looking behind us makes for a very good journey. If you look behind you all the time you won't see the potholes and pitfalls in front of you! No, you need to look in front of you and in the words of Paul, strain forward to what lies ahead. 

I think that the past can be an amazing teacher. We can learn so much from what has gone on in our past - and it can definitely be the catalyst for change in the future. 

But is heaps of regret helpful? 


Proverbs 15:13 “A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.”

You can't change the past but you can change the future. 

So no matter what you've done in the past - sins you've committed, foolish errors you've made, mistakes you've made, wrong roads you've taken- there's really no point regretting it too much. The past is the past. What's done is done. 

Stop looking behind you and regretting what you've done. Learn from your mistakes- and move on.

May you be blessed abundantly!
What has the Lord been teaching you lately?
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  1. What a great post, Bonnie! I love that Matthew West song. :)

  2. Bonnie, this was lovely! Thank you for speaking such truth. You ministered to my heart.

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Lexi! You always know how to give such a lovely, uplifting compliment... you're so sweet.

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you! :) (Did your brothers pass on the envelope for you?)

  4. Thank you for this post which reminds me of how forgiving our great God is!


    1. I'm so glad you were encouraged, Sarah. :) Blessings to you


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