Monday, November 8, 2010

Maintaining Regrets

Regrets.  We all have them.   We regret not spending more time with a loved one who has died.  We regret yelling at our spouse or our children.  We regret telling that lie or maybe we just regret not buying that cute pair of shoes the other day that would've matched the pants we are wearing today.  Life is full of regrets.  Some are a learning experience.  Some are sad and some are just downright annoying when they keep reminding us of our shortcomings.  So what do you do with all those regrets?  

Although maybe not so humorous at the time, I have one regret that makes me smile and sometimes laugh.  I regret not checking on Crystal and her cousin a little sooner the Sunday afternoon they completely covered themselves and the entire bathroom with powder.  Two little ghostly white 4 year olds stood in a cloud of powder surrounded by powdery tiles, tub, toilet, carpet and sink, peering at me with the only things not white in the room, two little brown eyes and two little blue eyes.  This regret was short lived but one that helped me to remember to check on them a little more frequently.  This one definitely falls in the learning experience category.  I also regret not snapping a picture of the scene which I would've scanned and included here for your amusement.

When is comes right down to it, I think many regrets are born out of sin.  Things we did that we wish we hadn't done or things that we didn't do out of selfishness that we wish we had done.  Things we have long ago repented of and asked forgiveness for but we can't quiet rid ourselves from the memory of them.  This thought hit home for me while listening to the song, "How He Loves" by David Crowder.
A line from the song says, "I don't have time to maintain these regrets when I think about the way He loves us.  Oh how He loves us. How He loves us oh."  Is that what I've been doing?  Do I carefully maintain my regrets?  Do I allow them to distract me from the fact that I'm a forgiven child of God.  Do I hold on to them instead of living in freedom from them?  

With 6 girls you can bet that they all have things that they wish they had said or not said and done or not done.  As their mom/stepmom, I would never consider reminding them of those things.  I would never want them to continue to hang on to anything that might cause them pain.  I love them all too much to want them to hurt.  Doesn't the same thing apply to all of us.  God our Father would never want us to maintain our regrets and continue to hang on to them.  He loves us too much for that!  

It's hard to let them go.  It's hard to forget them but maybe the point isn't to forget them but just to learn from them.  I've found that it takes courage to trust someone enough to believe that they will not hold your regrets against you but sometimes it takes more courage to not hold them against yourself.  Love each other deeply because love covers over a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8  

Maybe I should live in grace and maintain my sanity instead of my regrets!