One of my favorite, classic Christian books is Hinds Feet on High Places.
It’s an allegory about our journey to understanding our co-crucifixion with Christ.
Early in her journey, the main character, Much Afraid, is accompanied by several discouraging companions.
One companion that Satan likes to send with us is Regret.
He is a miserable companion!
Is Regret journeying with you too?
I know he’s tried on several occasions to walk with me and chirp in my ear about the would’ve, should’ve and could’ves.
How do we shake Regret?
First, we have to recognize who Regret works for.
Satan is his boss, and Satan is called the Accuser of the Brethren.
He uses Regret to pummel us with accusations.
Beloved, we all make mistakes in life, and if we don’t forgive ourselves and receive God’s grace, we will offer Satan an open door to use Regret to haunt us with our fleshly choices.
Before he followed Jesus, Paul persecuted the church and put believers to death.
Do you think Satan used Regret to remind him of that? Absolutely!
How did Paul counter Regret?
He consistently left the things of the past in the past by focusing on pressing on to the upward call of Jesus.
This means that he recognized that he couldn’t do anything to change his past choices nor could he do anything to atone for them.
Instead, he rested in the reality that the blood of Jesus had fully atoned for those choices.
Now, this did not make his choices “OK”, rather it proved the power of Jesus’ blood to pay for choices as horrible as executing Christians.
Through the years, I’ve often seen my counselees struggle with forgiving themselves.
Most of the time, it comes from the misconception that forgiveness makes our wrong choices acceptable.
No, forgiveness does not make our fleshly choices acceptable; it acknowledges the sacrifice of Jesus as acceptable.
Beloved, when Jesus died on the cross, so did we; when He rose from the dead, so did we.
We were crucified sinners and raised as saints.
All of our sins, past present and future, were paid for in full.
Now, as Paul noted in Romans 6, this is not an excuse to sin; rather it’s motivation to walk in the power of the Spirit in the victory that Jesus has already achieved for us on the cross.
Like Paul, we need to focus on what’s ahead of us not on what’s behind.
If Regret creeps into your thoughts, remind him of what Jesus did on the cross and that you have overcome him by the power of the Blood of the Lamb.
Regret will not only shut up, he will also flee from you!
Beloved, let’s purpose to put off our flesh which seeks to find life apart from Jesus, and put on the mind of Christ which rests in the life of Christ in us.
Praise God, He had given us victory over Regret so that we can walk on in the strength of Jesus flowing in us and through us for His glory!