Well, it’s that time of year…time to make resolutions. New Years’ resolutions are famous for breaking them. We have this notion that if we make resolutions we will loose weight, exercise, stop drinking, slow down, volunteer, spend less… if only making a resolution were that easy. No one is watching to see if we follow through so we let them slide and then make jokes about it. They end up simply being a list of good intentions. We are sincere when we make them but during the ensuing 12 months something happens and the good intentions don’t happen. You know what they say: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”.
Perhaps that speaks to regret. One of the hardest things to live with is regret. Things we wish we could undo. Decisions that could be revisited. Words that should not have been uttered. Money not spent.
I have lived with regret – a lot of it. Many mistakes I wished I could undo. But someone once said, “You can’t steer a car looking in the rearview mirror.” Regret keeps us stuck. Bound. Stagnant. Stale. None of those words are appealing. To move from regret to peace you have to forgive yourself. Easier said than done. I find that the hardest of all to deal with and I have struggled with it. I have asked for and received forgiveness from a person for some offense. I have asked for and received forgiveness from God for my many sins. He has promised that, “If we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us.” (I John 1:9) The Bible also says He removes our sin “as far as the east is from the west.” (Psalms 103:12). What a promise! What freedom!
But do we believe it? Not if we live with regret.
I have finally come to realize that if God Almighty, Creator of the Universe, Savior of the world can forgive me, who am I not to forgive myself? Think about it.