Can’t live anyone else’s regrets

Just a quick post today.

twigs on ground

For some strange reason, I was in my yard picking up twigs and branches from a bad rainstorm last night and the words, “You can’t live anyone else’s regrets”, just popped into my head and I knew i had to post about it. Not sure why but here goes.

We all make mistakes. We all have regrets. I have my share of both. BUT…..

………………………other people’s regrets cannot become ours…………………….

I know someone who many, many times ends up regretting their decisions or should I say the lack of them. It’s hard then to listen to them when you’ve been the one on the sidelines encouraging them not to put themselves there again.

It’s unkind to say, “I told you so” but down deep it is how you feel at times.

Everyone has to make their own peace with their past. I’ve even learned that some of my regrets have proven to be life-changers for my future.

For example, there was a long period in my life when I allowed others to determine my happiness. The mere hint that someone didn’t like me put me in a tailspin. A misunderstood remark. A phone call. Feeling ignored. I nauseated myself. It was my “idol-worshipping” period but my worship centered around people, not things.

(I certainly believe that we don’t selfishly live our lives with no regard for anyone else. But I like the last part, “because at the end they are your mistakes and regrets, not theirs.”

Of course, no one but me knew it. When I realized what I was doing and more importantly that I didn’t need to, I turned a corner.

Sure, I still want to please people but not at the cost of my self-respect. No one can give me back those years. No one can live my regrets but me.

So what to we do when faced with those people who are truly saddened by their past choices and their ever-present regrets?

We simply let them know we’ve been there, too. That we all make mistakes. That the past is the past and will never change. BUT the future is a different story altogether. We can encourage them to use their past to pave the way for their future.

But if they choose to continually lament, then we need to walk away either literally, figuratively, or at times, both. This is Biblical. We are to share burdens through prayer, understanding, and at times with some physical help. But we should not carry the whole load indefinitely. We can let them know we understand their pain but we should never get down in the mud with them. Then you both sucked in.

(Do i need to say that no one else can live our regrets, either?)

As I said, I don’t know why picking up debris from my yard should prompt this post but it did. Have to believe God had a reason.

Anyway, God bless and I hope you have a good day.