This week I had a great conversation with a friend about regrets. There have been seasons of my life where everything was shrouded in the darkness of wishing I had made different decisions, said different words, worked harder, etc. so that I would be in a better situation now or wouldn’t have damaged a relationship beyond repair. Ongoing present moments become tangled into the messes from the past as I dwell on how I would have done things differently and wish I could go back.
Being a Christian from childhood, I’ve found that it’s often easy to miss how the gospel actually applies to my life. I didn’t resonate well with 2 Cor 5:17 because I couldn’t remember not being steeped in a Christian worldview: I’d been a “new creation” nearly all my life. Being a Christian was a given, but I still dealt with my problems in my own way.
As my friend talked about handling past regrets, it clicked for me that wishing to go back and change things that I wished I’d done differently is simply a trap in thinking. The gospel is about redemption. Redemption is not about altering the past, but the future. Jesus provides the way for us to change our future from a life in isolation to one reunited in healed and flourishing relationship with him. This is as true of individual situations in life as it is of our life as a whole. I can’t go back and alter the things I’m not proud of, but I can learn from them, and receive his gift of further opportunities and prevent the cycle of regret from continuing.
– Cameron Peters, Director of Communications