If Only

IF ONLY

REGRETS

2 Corinthians 7:10 biblegateway-com-logo  For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.

Am I the only one that has ever said this?  If only ____________ hadn’t happened that way, then _______________.  If only I had of ______________ then the results would have been different.

I recently have been listening to “The Broken Way” by Ann Voskamp and it’s all about living in this broken world, with our broken hearts and learning how to let the love in while giving Adundant love out.

One of the 1st things I noted when listening was how we need to learn to say “I’m Sorry” and that will teach others around us that it’s okay to show our weaknesses because we have a Lord that remodels all of our broken parts.  Admit our failures, allowing people to see that we too are not perfect.  Admit when we’re wrong, allowing people the opportunity to forgive  our wrongs.

I vividly remember the 1st time I admitted to my adult children that I was wrong about something.  I remember a gasp of surprise in their voice that “MOM” was admitting she was wrong.  That moment has not left my mind. It saddens me that I led them to believe that I was perfect, that I never made mistakes and never needed to show my weaknesses.  It saddens me for a couple reasons.

1. I am absolutely not perfect and I have made mistakes, bad decisions and acting in ways that I shouldn’t.  And if I don’t admit that, then their disappointment in me grows.

2. That I led a day to day life, portraying a sense of perfection then that is what others (my boys) would grow up believing that I expected from them.  And that is the furthest from the truth. I understand that they’re not perfect and I don’t expect them to be BUT I love them anyway.

I also vividly remember my 1st “If Only” after my divorce to my 1st husband.  Maybe just maybe my children and I wouldn’t have had to feel all this pain.

The problem with the “if onlys” is it wouldn’t be a if only if it wasn’t in the past.

And then dealing with the “if onlys” and “regrets” can also give you the sense that you have nothing to offer.  Nothing good to give!  And you allow the “if onlys” and “regrets” to fill your soul and restrict your purpose.

Ann writes, “Change your life expectations to what “life can expect from you” and your life changes! Believing there is enough of me that there is enough of anything to give.  If I want to give to those in need and that I believe I could be worth enough to give to others for Christ, then what is stopping me.  Don’t I need to believe that I’m good enough, that God made me enough to be able to give. I must believe in me and in God, I must believe that God believes in me. The bible says, Christ is in me so God can’t help but believe in me.”

When Jesus chose his disciples, he chose the imperfect ones, the broken ones, were the ones he believed in, Right? Matthew 14:23-34 (click for full story) So in the story of Peter walking on the water to Jesus, once Peter stepped in the water and realized what he was doing, he started sinking.  Did he sink because of his lack of faith in Jesus or because of his lack of faith in himself?  Jesus believed in him or he wouldn’t have told him to step out there in the first place.

No matter how broken, believe that Jesus believes enough in you that he chose you.  Don’t doubt!  Step out there and give!  Give abundantly!

So we need to empty ourselves

“The abundant life doesn’t have a bucket list but has an empty bucket.  Pour ourselves out so that we can be filled by others.  Emptying of our self allows our self to be given to.” ref “A Broken Way”

We are most Christ like when we are most empty!

So don’t wait! There is someone out there waiting for us to be that good thing that happens in their life!  Live ABUNDANTLY and make it not about what we expect out of life but what life can expect from us.

Forget the “If onlys” and “Regrets”!  Live today Abundantly for the Lord! And Love !

Lord, I am so thankful for your love.  I am abundantly aware that I would not be able to live not even 1 day without you.  Please forgive me when I fail, which is often.  But thank you for always picking me back up and reminding me that I’m worth it.  Continue to be with my family, bless the, protect them and help us love.  I pray Lord for those that don’t know you and I pray for their souls.  Amen!

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