As far as the east is from the west
By Dr. William Holland
Someone said, “Our lives are defined by opportunities, including the ones we miss. Let us not weep over chances we have missed, but rather for the ones we did not take.” When I look back over my life, I can see where I’ve made plenty of mistakes and I’ve also missed out on some wonderful opportunities. Maybe you are saying the same thing. If so, I encourage you to resist the temptation to live in regret. Humans are fallible creatures and we all make wrong choices but at least our disappointment reveals that we care and that’s a good thing. James Joyce said, “mistakes are the portals of discovery” and there is no doubt they can be a significant part of our learning process. I realize that living in denial is much easier than forgiving ourselves but repentance is a more worthwhile endeavor than living with the overwhelming feelings of guilt and condemnation. The truth is we can either embrace the inclination to allow these negative thoughts to haunt us and flood our heart with sadness or we can resist this emotional torture by calling on the Lord to heal our heart and renew our mind. God’s plans and ways are bigger than our mistakes and lost opportunities. He is not only ready to forgive and restore us. He can fill our life with confidence, hope, and victory!
It’s common when suffering from regret, to be reminded of certain individuals that we secretly blame for our failures. However, as the water is long gone under the bridge, there is no need to hold on and replay the scenarios of what could have been – you’ve suffered enough. It’s important to consider that walking around in this negative and stressful state of mind can lead to depression, anxiety, and even physical health problems. It would be wise to make a list of those we need to forgive and sincerely pray while making sure our name is at the top. You see, unforgiveness holds us in a spiritual and mental prison and giving it over to God is the key that opens the door to freedom. We are the only one that can choose to put an end to us living in the misery of an unchangeable past. Alice Walker said, “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they do not have any.” The Bible refers to the devil as the “the accuser” of the brethren and this is where these negative voices are coming from. Some may try to pretend these situations never happened or that maybe they will all just go away, which sounds nice, but running away from reality does not work. Being honest with God and ourselves is the pathway to peace.
I love what the Apostle Paul said, “This one thing I do; forgetting those things which are behind, I reach forth to the things which are before me.” He is encouraging us to not only concentrate on the present but also look to the future and be sensitive to new opportunities. We have a tendency to deal with our problems our own way, but God wants to help us deal with this once and for all. Let go and allow Him to give you a brand-new start as He’s ready to fulfill the dreams and desires He’s placed in your heart. He loves us and longs to forgive us and to restore our dreams that seem to be lost forever. He can create new opportunities in ways we could never imagine. I believe our heavenly Father desires to restore the years that you’ve lost and give you a new vision and a fresh zeal to fulfill your destiny. Being positive and optimistic about your future is a deliberate decision. Will you sincerely believe you are forgiven and accept the spiritual reality that you are worthy of His love? We know that nothing is impossible with God and His Word cannot fail. Psalm 103:11-12 is one of the greatest promises about our security and filled with the hope for all eternity. “For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”
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