When we walk through life, we will inevitably do things we regret. Often the pain is minor but sometimes the pain is deep. A few weeks ago, I was plumbing in a hot water heater while sitting on a five gallon bucket. I was talking to a friend and trying to hurry, which is my mantra. I was trying to open a package, when all of a sudden, the knife slipped and hit my leg. I was instantly filled with regret. Regret that it had happened, but most of all, I knew better. The cut was deep and I was able to see things in my leg that made me lightheaded. Words can also cut, just as the knife cut my leg. We get caught up in the emotion of the disagreement, and before we can stop it, “regret.” But it is what happens next that decides the outcome. Just as the prodigal son sat in the pig pen with regret, he had a choice to make. Either take responsibility and heal the separation or sit in his feelings blaming others. Healing only takes place when we go back and fix the problem. As I sat on the kitchen floor regretting my careless mistake, I had to make a decision. There was no going back in time, only taking the next step. Mine was to call Boon Casey and see what I needed to do next. Wise council is always a good option to choose. We must be willing to choose healing, instead of leaving a pain unchecked. The example that Jesus so carefully used in the parable, gives us a clear example of what we must do for restoration. Get up, go back, and ask for forgiveness. We will face times of regret in life, but it is what we choose to do next that shapes the story of our lives.
““When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.”
Luke 15:17-20 NIV
Pastor Benaiah Snider