You know how sometimes the same thing comes up in your life over and over?
Like you hear something about a certin car or you've never heard of and then all of a sudden it's everywhere?
Well, I think God does that for us sometimes too. And He's been doing it for me this week.
It started on Sunday at church. Our Pastor gave a short (due to this really cool World Market thing our church was doing) but powerful message, which you can hear here, called No Regrets. It was pretty much what you would expect from a message with that title. He encouraged us to do all we could for the Kingdom of Christ so we had no regrets when we got to heaven.
Then on Tuesday morning at the gym, I took a Step class... and at the end of that the instructor played a song - I think by Third Day - about, up you guessed it... having no regrets! It was almost the very same message as Pastor Don delivered on Sunday morning.
So I've been thinking about that a lot the last few days. Honestly, I had the "usual" thoughts at first. What more can I do for those hurting? What ways does Jesus want me to serve Him? What can I do that I'm not doing? There are lots of answers to those questions for sure, but I ended up kinda moving on in my brain to these thoughts...
How am I living my daily life that would lead to regrets? What am I doing daily that I shouldn't be doing? What am I doing each day that is good - and I should keep doing? Then to add to that (see - here's God being in my face again) I meet with a dear girlfriend and she shared with me something very relevant she had learned on a marriage retreat just this past weekend, it was this question...
"Will this matter in 20 years?"
OK, so now I've got all that rolling around in my mind and heart. When it comes to daily stuff I have a problem with my mouth. I know those of you who are long time visitors to my blog know I've mentioned that before. My parents told me from an early age to watch my mouth. I was told, it's not what you say, but how you say it. Golly, that's been a problem for me my whole life! The older I've gotten the more I've given into the Holy Spirit and allowed Him to control my words and actions. But I fail at it again and again.
I get upset with my kids and sometimes say things in such a way that is too harsh and later I feel bad. Then I have to apologize and explain how Mommy was wrong and I'm sorry.
And then there are the times that I talk too much. I'm really trying to learn how to tame my tongue. Just shut up sometimes. Cause I've learned that sometimes saying too much - even when it seems innocent - can come back around to bit you in the rear-end!
And then at some point in my life, I'm not sure when, but I developed this thing about arguments and fights. I hate them. I simply hate confrontation. I don't know why, or where that started. I lived in a very peaceful home growing up. My parents never yelled at me or each other... so I'm not sure where that came from, but it's a problem for me. So when confrontations come up, I'm not very good at dealing. I kinda clam up and it's like my brain completely shuts off. So in order to deal with my inability to follow through with things, I totally avoided them. That's not the best way to deal with that problem.
But recently something has been happening, not necessarily to me, but more around me, that's changing me again - at least I think it is. I'm learning that sometimes it's worse to say nothing at all. All around me there are marriages falling apart, friendships hurting, families not supporting each other in hard times, even whole groups of people (people who are all Christians) that are in discord due to a lack of actually talking to each other.
All of that upsets me. It makes me mad. And so through these things I'm trying to learn to speak my mind when the Holy Spirit leads me to, and to really keep my mouth shut when He's saying "Nope Hol, not now!" I think this - this new found something, I don't know what to call it, awareness for the need to communicate, is one of the areas the Lord and I are examining so that I can be leading a life with no regrets.
It's kinda a new light shinning in my heart and mind, and I'm by far "good" in this area, but it's something that I'm aware of and that I'm working on. I don't think I'm gonna go out and pick any fights or anything like that, but I am trying to be more aware of and in tune with what the Holy Spirit wants me to say and when and how I should say it! And when I should say NOTHING AT ALL!
I think this is an area in my life where I have many regrets, but I'm so very thankful for the grace and mercy that my Savior offers me so I can start again each day and with His help, do better.
Today Lord, help me to live my life for you with no regrets!