3 Keys to Conquering Regrets

Regrets Have Power

After a bitter divorce, my friend, Pam, whispered, “If only I had understood how to make a relationship work.  Maybe my family would still be together.”

Guilt gripped Nancy when she thought of her grandmother. “If only I hadn’t neglected her when she was old and lonely,” she lamented.

Filled with regrets over some poor choices she had made, Cora constantly called herself names, felt she was a failure and was convinced that the world would be better off without her.  Her guilt led to severe depression and even attempted suicide before she received the help she needed.

Left unresolved, regrets produce powerfully negative emotions. They cause you to:

  • Sentence yourself to feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and self-hatred.
  • Feel ashamed and unworthy of being loved by others or by God.
  • Fear being exposed and believing others would reject you if they knew what you had done.

Most of us have regrets because none of us is perfect, but how have your regrets affected YOU?  And what can you do now if you still feel guilty and ashamed? 

God Can Set You Free

The apostle Paul had many reasons to be shackled with regrets:  he attacked and imprisoned Christians and even approved of killing them. Yet Paul did what you and I need to do with our regrets: forget what is behind, look forward, and press on (Philippians 3:12-14).

Paul didn’t waste his time or his emotional and spiritual energies by looking back and dwelling on his past. God calls YOU, and me, to do the same.

If regrets haunt you, think about these statements God makes:

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

What personal step do you have to take to experience God’s promise?

  1. Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord.  Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow… (Isaiah 1:18).

No matter how great your sin, God says He will remove it.
Ask Him to remove the stabbing pain in your conscience and replace it with His peace.

  1. Since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus … let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience… (Hebrews 10:19-22).

Rather than fixating on your failures, take God at His word. The stain of your guilty conscience has been bleached white! How will you celebrate this astounding gift?

Reject Satan’s Trap

Satan tries to use regrets to keep us emotionally and spiritually miserable.

Is that what is happening in your life?

Refuse to let him have a victory in your circumstances. Confess your failures and then forget them. Celebrate your freedom in Christ—dance, sing, clap your hands, weep with gratitude! THEN: Pivot your mental focus and move forward with a cleansed conscience and renewed passion to serve our Amazing God.

 

Qu. I’d love to hear some of your story relating to struggles with regrets. How has God helped you? Share HERE

 

May God encourage you on your journey of faith,

This excerpt is adapted from Poppy’s book, “I’m Too Young to Be This Old.”  Contact Poppy at poppy@poppysmith.com to speak at you next event or visit her website www.poppysmith.com  for more information.

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