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What regrets do you have in your life? Would you like to turn those regrets into victories?
Here is what Jesus said to one who had many regrets: “Her many sins have been forgiven, and this is why she has shown great love” (see Luke 7:36-50).
Many of us have a hard time forgiving ourselves. Mercilessly, we replay past sins over and over in our shame-filled minds and in the confessional. We do the same ugly replays with mistakes that caused some sort of disaster, though they were not sins.
We wish we could time travel and do it over again using the wisdom we’ve gained from it. But this is not what Jesus wishes for us. He wants us to use this wisdom today, doing something good that we might never have done if we had never committed that terrible sin or mistake. He wants us to move into a tomorrow that displays his victory over sins and disasters.
If there’s a memory we don’t like to recall or if there are any triggers that still shoot painful bullets of shame and regret at us, we have not yet made peace with the past. We’ve repented, we’ve gained wisdom from it, and so God is very pleased with us. But we’re handicapped by the wound of being unforgiving toward ourselves.
Regrets and ugly memories are traps that prevent us from fully experiencing God’s victory over our sins and mistakes. Love – given profusely to God in thanksgiving and received gratefully from God in acceptance of his mercy – frees us to live victoriously over the past, paving our way into a wonderful future, embracing today’s opportunities to build on the wisdom we’ve gained.
Jesus is waiting for us to appreciate his mercy so much that we kiss his feet and anoint him with our desire to put to good use whatever we’ve learned.
With Jesus, you can turn those regrets into victories!