Regrets are among the greatest demons of life. They eat away at us as we wish we had seized, accomplished or obtained the things that have now passed. Regrets seem to be demons we all have. As I recently arrived at the age of 35, I found myself automatically reflecting on my journey in life and I discovered that my regrets are not related to vocation, education or finance. I think there were missed opportunities when it comes to those areas. But I wouldn’t say I felt a sense of regret over them, like I have a nagging wish for doing those things differently. The regrets that I’ve accumulated are related to my character, relationships with others, the kind of person I was or am, and my relationship with God. I think what we regret are the things we value most and my regrets have seared a deep impression upon me that in this life what’s most important are not necessarily the financial decisions or career moves I make. We can measure ourselves by the quantity of our successes and still miss the quality of being the person. It is the kind of person I am day-to-day that sums up the kind of life I will have lived before God. It is about how I love God first and others next daily. It is about the attitudes I have, the thoughts I think, the desires I entertain, and the actions I do that sum up the kind of man I am. It is not about how I have developed my financial assets but about how I have contributed to His kingdom in society. Do my attitudes, thoughts, desires and actions embrace integrity, goodness, truth, love, and honor that rightly emulate Christ? Do I contribute to the creative work of God or to the corruptive work of sin? At 35, my impressionable regrets have ignited a vigilance in me to fight for the things that shape my personhood in Christ, to honor them and treat them as something precious in my life.
While there are no do-overs for regrets, the resolve I have is the reconciliation I find in the work of God in my life. I cling to Ephesians 2:10 that tells me that I am God’s craftsmanship prepared in advance in Christ for good works. “Good” may mean honorable, worthy, and valuable. When elderly folks share with me about their regrets, a tone of insignificance plagues their testimonies. Yet with God as my Artist, the Author Divine of my journey and the Master Craftsman who fashions me, my one confidence is the work of God that’s greater than my mistakes. My reconciliation with my regrets is my faith in God’s artistry over my daily developments as well as my blunders. At 35 as I reflected on my regrets, I found peace in God’s authorship.