The Trap of Regret

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23
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Do you have regrets? If so, are they keeping you in bondage? Are they preventing you from moving on with your life, from taking risks, from becoming who you were meant to be?

Virtually every human being who has ever lived has experienced regret. Whether it was the regret of not having done something one should have done or of having done something one should not have done, the feeling of regret that follows can be tormenting. But the good news is that Jesus Christ can set you free from the prison of regret.

Yes, regret is a prison. A spiritual prison as well as a mental prison. The person who lives in regret builds walls around his thinking that keep out the truth and protect the lie.

I know. It happened to me.

Years ago, I made a career decision that I deeply regretted after having made it.  It was one of those decisions that was irreversible and one with whose consequences I would have to live for the rest of my life.  For a long time afterward, I chastised myself for having made that decision. It set me on a path that, at the time, seemed destructive to my career but, in reality, led me to the vocation for which God created me.

But I didn’t know it at the time, so I allowed the spirit of regret to enslave me. Yes, regret is a spirit. An evil spirit that will rob you of your joy and, if you do not stop it in its tracks, even of your destiny.

Maybe you, too, have made a wrong decision either by making a wrong choice or by not choosing at all.  No decision is also a decision. If so, what the Lord did for me, He will do for you.  Listen to what He promises to those who have regrets:

1) “And we know that all that happens to us is working for our good if we love God and are fitting into his plans” (Romans 8:28 TLB). In His infinite love, God has a way of taking every experience of our lives and weaving it into the beautiful tapestry of our destiny.  With the benefit of hindsight, I now realize, many years later, that the career decision I made back then was, ultimately, the right one for me. And, most important, it was the decision that God had ordained for me. This leads to my next point.

2) “The Lord guides us in the way we should go and protects those who please him” (Psalm 37:23).  When we love the Lord, He directs our steps. Even though I thought I was making a mistake, I was actually following the path God had laid out for me. 

3) “I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten” (Joel 2:25).  Even if you did make a decision that allowed the enemy (“the swarming locust”)  to rob you, the Lord will restore what the enemy stole from you. This is wonderful news.

So be encouraged. All is not lost. Jesus promises you that His plans for you are for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).

Questions: 1) Do you have any regrets? 2) How have you handled those regrets? 3) Do you believe that Jesus can take those regrets and fashion them into something beautiful? You can leave a comment by clicking here. To receive these blog posts in your emailbox, please click here.
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Copyright 2015 by MaryAnn Diorio, PhD.  All Rights Reserved.

The Fearful Heart

Do you have a fearful heart? What is a fearful heart? It is a heart that operates out of fear instead of faith.

A fearful heart manifests in many ways:

  • It chooses safety over risk.
  • It chooses comfort over sacrifice.
  • It chooses pulling back rather than pressing forward.

Did you know that God hates a fearful heart? His Word says that He takes “no pleasure in the one who shrinks back” (Hebrews 10:38). So, what do we do if we have a fearful heart?

Here are a few things that have helped me fight fear in my life:

  • Do what you fear to do.  Facing your fear is a huge part of overcoming it. You will discover that doing the thing you fear builds your confidence.
  • Move out of your comfort zone. Your comfort zone is your mediocre zone. Comfort brings mediocrity; risk-taking brings growth.
  • Fear God more than man. This is the most important tip I can offer you. Scripture says that “fearing people is a dangerous trap . . . .” (Proverbs 29:25).  But when we fear God above all else, we begin to become wise (Psalm 111:10).

If you have a fearful heart, let me encourage you. Find Scripture verses that deal with fear and memorize them. Speak them aloud as often as you can. Soon you will develop an image of yourself in your spirit as a person of great courage, a person who fears only God and moves forward in His power and might.

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Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.