June 23, 2020 Regrets - We've All Had Them - Father Michael's Words to Live By

“Do nothing without deliberation,
   but when you have acted, do not regret it.”
(Eccl. 32:19)

  REGRET!!!!  We’ve all been there – done that = had regrets!  At some point, we’ve all failed, missed the mark, uttered a sharp word(s) we wished we could take back, hurt someone we loved, and well, ___________ fill in the blank. 

In my own life, I can still vividly recall how just before my 19th birthday – I failed miserably.  My failure was not just a small ordinary failure – it was a devastating failure.  And yet the reality is:  I was able to seek and find forgiveness – to recover – to move beyond my failure – and to once again live and enjoy life. 

No one is exempt from failure – it happens!  And we regret those things we wish we could/should have done differently if given the opportunity!  IF ONLY WE COULD GO BACK.  But we all know – WE CANNOT GO BACK!  WE CAN ONLY GO FORWARD!  AND FORWARD WE SHOULD GO!!


 “When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.” ~ Alexander Graham Bell

Make it a rule of life never to regret and never to look back. Regret is an appalling waste of energy; you can't build on it; it's only for wallowing in.”  ~ Katherine Mansfield


The confession of the apostle Paul bears a fine resemblance: "I do not understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do, but I do what I hate" (Romans 15:7). 

Regret has a way of enabling the monsters within us to flourish.  The journey of a believer through the many rooms of faith posits countless opportunities to peer at the monster within.  There are days in the life of faith when I question whether I am living up to the title of believer, neighbor, disciple—even casual pilgrim. 

In certain rooms of awareness, I find there is no question:  I AM NOT!  Yet, as G.K. Chesterton wrote in his autobiography, I have only ever found one religion that "dared to go down with me into the depth of myself." 

Faith is the opportunity to be searched by the Spirit of Truth, the Breath of Holiness, the God who maneuvers us through messy rooms and sin-stained walls and exposes our monstrous ways.  It would indeed be a futile journey if we walked this path alone.

The journey of a soul through its messiest rooms is not merely a drive-by glimpse of the depths of our sin and our need for repentance.  We are shown the weight of our masks and the extent of our messes; we are handed the great yoke of our own failures.  And we are shown again the one who asks to take them all from us.  "Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows... But he was pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities" (Isaiah 53:4-5). 

VERSE FOR TODAY:  “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret...”  (2 Corinthians 7:10)

PRAYER FOR TODAY:  Almighty God, we realize each and every day that we are far from perfect.  But the good news is:  You still love us.  Forgive our shortcomings and mistakes and failures.  May they continually remind us and lead us to experience your grace and love and mercy.  Free us from the burden to be perfect.  Infill us with your Holy Spirit and inspire us each day to desire to be better people today than we were yesterday.  May we find fulfillment in walking with the Lord all the days of our lives.  Amen.


Fr. Michael+