Oh How I Wish!

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“If you live long enough, you’ll make mistakes. But if you learn from them, you’ll be a better person. It’s how you handle adversity, not how it affects you. The main thing is never quit, never quit, never quit.” – William J. Clinton

https://liveboldandbloom.com/11/quotes/regret-quotes

I just saw an advertising where the dad and daughter were playing scrabble which lead to a pillow fight, oh how it looked fun.

I talk about my grandchildren, but I have not spoken much about my divorce, the separation of my daughter and myself. 

When my first wife divorced me we were living in Ontario, Canada.  She decided to move to Saskatchewan,  Canada along with our daughter.  That meant I would not have convenient access to seeing my daughter.  She was a miracle child because her mother was not suppose to have children, especially one where she would go through natural child birth, her pelvic area was too small.  The fear was if she were to go into labor the child could be crushed causing the death of the child and her mother.

Divorce is one thing a couple never dreams about when they take their marriage vows of til death do you part.  Divorce was something that I would never want for I lived to watch my mom and dad go through one.  I wasn’t living at home when it happened but still I felt the sting of it.  I watched what happened to the two youngest siblings during the divorce of my parents.

I have lived with that regret all my life.  All the important events like watching my daughter ride a bicycle for the first time.  Learning to drive, and the all important event, watching her walk down the isle to marry her partner.

There is one thing that happens when you have regrets, you become stagnant, always looking backward.  Afraid of moving forward in life, unable to make commitments, living with a hole in your spirit, becoming a pessimist about life in the whole. 

I have found that there is life after a mistake, a lifting of the cloud on your mind, a way to get back up and move forward in your life.  Learning that your life can be fulfilling, a new zest, sparkle, and hope for my future.

I have constant contact now with my daughter, wonderful times with my grandchildren, filling a new treasure chest with wonderful happy memories. 

So, I can truly say, it may feel like you are stuck in the muck of despair, but it doesn’t have to be a long slog of hurting.  You can pick yourself up and live a life that is fulfilling, filled with joy and enthusiasm!

Rear View Mirror

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Rear View Mirror

Exo 16:1-3 MSG
1  On the fifteenth day of the second month after they had left Egypt, the whole company of Israel moved on from Elim to the Wilderness of Sin which is between Elim and Sinai.
2  The whole company of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron there in the wilderness.
3  The Israelites said, “Why didn’t GOD let us die in comfort in Egypt where we had lamb stew and all the bread we could eat? You’ve brought us out into this wilderness to starve us to death, the whole company of Israel!”

Growing up there was one movie I enjoyed watching that was, The Wizard Of Oz.  In that movie we hear Dorothy make a statement “there’s no place like home”.  There are moments in my life that I find myself thinking the very same thing.

In the early 90’s my grandmother decided to sell her house.  This house held such great memories for everyone who ever visited her there.  After she sold it and moved into a subsidized seniors apartment.  Just shortly after that I was talking with my mother.  I am not sure how the subject arosed my mother told me, “I can never go home again”.

In my weak moments I pine for my childhood days during the summers I spent there with my grandparents and my one aunt.  It didn’t have a televison, computers were still -sci-fi, but somehow I was happy.  Also, during these times I find myself going to the phone then realising I cannot call home for they are now passed on.

There are a multitude of factors that if we allowed them they would keep us looking back in the rear view mirror.  We cannot move forward for we are stuck in a past that we cannot have back.  And for the most of them alot of them were not so good times.

Advice is given to addicts in recovery are told to stay away from triggers that would cause them to fall back into old habits.  It may mean not associating with former friends, avoiding going to the places where we gave in to those habits of addiction.

So it was with the Hebrew children while in the wilderness.  They were angry with Moses for they thought it would have been better to stay and die in Eygpt.  They had regrets of following Moses to the barren land they found themselves in.

The Apostle Paul left us instructions that we can avoid the rear view mirror, he writes for us “press toward the mark”.

Php 3:12-16 MSG
12  I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me.
13  Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus.
14  I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.
15  So let’s keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us. If any of you have something else in mind, something less than total commitment, God will clear your blurred vision—you’ll see it yet!
16  Now that we’re on the right track, let’s stay on it.(emphasis mine)

I would challenge every reader that if you want to be the homesick blues, depression, regrets, stop looking in the rear view mirror of your past life!

Pure Joy – Conclusion – Regrets

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1 Corinthians 15:9 MSG
9  It was fitting that I bring up the rear. I don’t deserve to be included in that inner circle, as you well know, having spent all those early years trying my best to stamp God’s church right out of existence.

Philippians 3:13-14 KJV
13  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
14  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

When I was younger, late teens early twenties, I probably never thought about the term ‘regrets’.

Now that I have more years behind me than that which is in front of me, I can say, ‘regrets I’ve had a few’.  However, dwelling on should’ve, could’ve, would’ve, leaves me in a state of just spinning wheels.  Someone once said, ‘you can’t move forward if you are always looking in the rear view mirror’.

The Apostle Paul, formerly Saul of Tarsus, was one who had many regrets. It was him that gave consent for the stoning of Stephen.

Acts 7:54-60 KJV
54  When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.
55  But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
56  And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
57  Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,
58  And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.
59  And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
60  And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

Acts 8:1-3 KJV
1  And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.
2  And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
3  As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.

Yes, the Apostle had much to feel regret about.  I believe this is why he wrote in his letter to the church in Corinth.

2 Corinthians 12:7-9 KJV
7  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
8  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

I can imagine that in his mind he could hear the screams of those Christians who he had part in their deaths.  Christ gave him the tool to battle this, ‘grace‘.

The apostle Paul gave us insight on how to fight this battle while in his letter to the Philippians.

2 Corinthians 12:7-9 KJV
7  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
8  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

We cannot escape the trials and tribulations while in the flesh on this earth, but we can have pure joy in our spirit that keeps us moving forward.  Yes, we will have our moments of sadness, grief, even anger, yet none of these things can keep us down.

We can know ‘pure joy’ for the Scripture is true, “the joy of the Lord is my strength”!

Nehemiah 8:10(d) …for the joy of the LORD is your strength.