no regrets

It's easy to look back over your days and wonder what if. When life isn't quite as you imagined or hoped it would be at this season of your life. It's easy to wonder what if past decisions could of impacted whether you're in the "right place" or not. But when is life really ever just as you planned, dreamed, imagined it would be?  

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." 
Isaiah 55:8-9 

I've never had a life plan set on a time frame, but I did imagine my life in a different place than where I'm at now. I am thankful for where I'm at, and where the steps behind me have brought me. Just as Adam and Eve would never have experienced or needed the grace of God had they not sinned in the garden, life's uncertain and changing course causes me to cling to Him who is faithful and sure. 

"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland." Isaiah 43:18-19

God's sovereignty is something I can choose to rest in daily. He knows your past, present, future. He considers and weighs all circumstances and knows the "what if"s and chooses the best. 

On this side of heaven we will always have a longing for more because we are made for an eternity redeemed and glorified with our Maker and Savior.  

I don't want to look back and wonder if I missed what the Lord truly had for me; to live with no regrets of being a good steward with the life and days the Lord gave me. 

It's a desire in search of purpose and fulfillment, to be and do what you are made to do. And until you even know what that is, you will feel restless and out of place, dissatisfied with life.  The only place of fulfillment and purpose in life is knowing your Maker and walking this life through, with, in Him. To know Him and to be known. 

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters." Colossians 3:23
Whatever...whether you are a student, an employee, a parent, a pastor, a friend, unemployed, restless in your job, single, married, whatever season you are in, wherever you are, be a good steward of where the Lord has placed you, honor Him for He is your Lord!

In general I'm not a person of great vision. I'm an implementor. Give me an idea and vision and I love to make it happen. Christ is my vision of where I'm heading. The more I'm in step with Him and walking in and a part of the things He would have for me, the more vision and clarity He gives confirming I'm right where I'm supposed to be. I still have moments questioning should I be doing something else, somewhere else? And I continue to ask the Lord that and ask Him to guide me in that and trust Him to lead that according to His specific plan for my life. And in those uncertain moments, it causes me to cling even more to Him and I'm reminded of my need for His leading, not my own. He is my Shepherd. Sheep cannot shepherd themselves, but are in need of the Great Shepherd. 

That's the beauty and struggle of walking is the Lord's revealed and unrevealed will. He gives us and lays out His desires for us as His people, but does not always lay out exactly what that is going to look like for each person. 

These things I know to be true, just a few things of His revealed will in scripture: 
  • For all to be saved (1 Tim 2:3-4; 2 Peter 3:9)
  • Be filled and controlled by the Spirit (Eph 5:17-18)
  • Bear fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23)
  • Act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with the Lord (Micah 6:8)
  • Participate in worship, teach each other, give thinks, and serve others (Ephesians 5:17-33)
  • Flee temptation (1 Cor 6:18)
  • Be sanctified and sexually pure (1 Thes 4:3-7)
  • Submit to authority and willing humble ourselves as servants (1 Peter 2:13-15)
  • Recognize God as our highest authority and obedient to Him above man (Acts 4:18-20)
  • Not be surprised by suffering (1 Peter 4:19; 3:17) because suffering refines and builds character and perseverance (Hebrews 10:36) and allowed to be used for His good purpose (Romans 8:28)
  • It is not by works you are saved (Eph 2:8-9) and faith evidences itself in good deeds (James 2:14-25)
If I walk in the known truths of His will for my life, and the many precious promises of scripture and of the gospel, the unrevealed and unknown mysterious will come to be. 

Resist the temptation, not of just looking back, but dwelling there because you won't see what's ahead. "Your past shapes you but does not define you." You need to know where you came from to know where you are going, but no matter what the road behind looked like, the road ahead awaits you, strive forward for what's ahead.

Surround yourself with people who give you perspective, spur you on, and point you to what's ahead.

He redeems our stories, our past. No time or life is lost or wasted. Return or remain in Him and your steps will make sense of your past. He is a God of second first times, who can make old things new, and can take the broken pieces of our world and put them back together.

Your mess redeemed because your message.

"Blessed are those whose strength is in you, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage."  Psalm 84:5

A heart set on pilgrimage in this life, humbly submitted to the Lord is a life with no regrets.