Originally published Tuesday, 01 January 2013.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10 (NIV)
“I have so many regrets.”
My grandfather is 98 years old and when my husband asked him on Christmas Day about his life that was his reply. That was how he summed up his life.
It broke my heart.
As I sat there I thought of how many people feel that way: like their life is a tale of regrets.
So many of us look at our lives and don’t see the good moments but rather the moments when we could have done something different.
I walked away from the conversation with my grandfather with questions agitating my soul:
How to breathe life in and shout it out?
How to keep a soul fertile to changes, places, people and God?
How to laugh often and much, yet weep with strangers?
How to face decisions that could change everything?
How to live and not regret?
I realised that there is so much in our lives that steals and destroys, so much that can make us live with regrets but that Jesus didn't come for us to live with regret.
Jesus came that we might have life: life to the full.
Allowing ourselves to dwell on regrets steals from the life Jesus came to give us.
If we do want to live fully, without regrets, we have to believe that Jesus has come to give us new life. We have to look at the mistakes we've made, accept the consequences and find a way to bring life back into them.
Maybe this means apologizing, or telling someone you love them or trying something you fear.
Perhaps living without regret means sacrificing something you love or finding a way to shake a habit or radically changing your life or forgiving someone who hurt you.
Whatever it is, take the risk, do the thing you fear, put regret behind you and trust that God will hold you.
I don't know what you regret but there is nothing in your life that God cannot fix so don't allow regret to steal from the life he has given you to live.
What changes do you need to make in your life today to make sure that you are living life to the full?
Do you have a story of overcoming regret that you can share in the comments?