Ever Wish You Could Have a "Do Over"?
When my boys were small and they struck out, fouled out, or got tackled while playing in our yard with the
neighborhood kids, they were quick to call for a "do over".
I had a "do over" experience recently. I had invited friends for dinner and had planned a dessert that is usually fail-proof. My orange juice pound cake usually turns out perfectly; after all, I am still using the bundt pan I borrowed from my sister over 30 years ago. (well seasoned, baked lots of cakes, etc) But for some reason that I still haven't figured out, when I turned the pan onto the plate, the cake refused to budge from the pan. After a little coaxing, it finally came out..... in pieces. So I quickly reverted back to another fail-proof dessert; banana pudding just like my Mom made. (no measuring, just a little of this and a lot of that) But as I looked at that mess of a cake I said to David, "I wish I could do that over again. It wouldn't stick this time!"
"Do-overs" may be ok for the sports field or bundt cakes; but what about the big stuff? Ever wish you could
go back to a time in your life when you made a critical decision that didn't turn out like you had hoped, and have a "do-over"?
I've had many times in my life when a "do over" would have been very much appreciated. In fact, just as recently as last week I had such a moment. I had said something to someone I love dearly that was very critical, and even unkind. After I hung up the phone, I wished so bad I could start that phone call over. I wanted to do what I'd heard my boys do so many years ago; scream "do over"!
As I thought about that conversation and began rehearsing my apology, I felt the Lord speak to me. Yes, I did need to apologize. And yes, I needed to learn a very important lesson from that conversation. But
He also reminded me of something else; if He gave me a "do over" each time things didn't turn out as I
had planned, I would miss some of my greatest learning experiences. Because you see, it isn't in the successes that I have learned the most, or grown the most spiritually, or learned great truths about God;
it's been in the "do over" experiences where God has proven Himself faithful and where He has worked
everything together for my good and His glory. (Romans 8:28) The things we look at as "do overs" are actually things God can take and use to develop His plan for our lives. And if I could go back and "do over" each one, that means I would have missed out on seeing God weave every "do over" experience, together with my other life experiences, into a tapestry of my life that looks like who I am today. Each time I experience a "do over" moment, it reminds me to pray before I make decisions the next time, to seek the wisdom of His Word before I voice my opinion and give unsolicited advice, because there are consequences to be had for my actions. More prayer, Bible study, and diligence on my part means less need of a "do over" moment.
So what would you like to "do over" today? We all have regrets and so many things in our past that we
wish we hadn't done or things we wish we had done. But what if a "do over" meant you missed God's will for where you are right now in your life? What if it meant a lesson that went unlearned, a spiritual growth spurt that didn't happen, or someone you love today so much you could just "bust" was not a part of your life because you had a "do over"?
No one lives a life with no regrets. But when I view those regrets, filtered through the loving hands of Jesus,
hopefully, I'll shout "do over" a little less often.
Have a great day today with no "do overs'!