What Could Have Been

What do you regret? As a believer it is already forgiven.

“Many of us crucify ourselves between two thieves – regret for the past and fear of the future.”  

~Fulton Oursler

Regret is an ugly thing. Dictionary.com describes “regret” as, to feel remorse for, or to feel sorrow over. It is a difficult emotion for us, as there can be a dissatisfaction, or sorrow or remorse over, it can be a paralysis of sorts. It is the kind of personal sorrow about ones behavior in a certain situation, that can be overwhelming.

There will always be a deep sense of loss for “what could have been.”

I regret many things, my mind works as an active recorder. Future life continues its relentless advance, and there is from the past a constant awareness of darkness, failure and sin.

There are some who have no idea what I’m talking about. I might as well be speaking Chinese. But there are others who will “spark” on what I have just stated. Regret for many of us, is savage and bitter.

Not a day goes by when the voice of darkness doesn’t speak to us. My thinking is that it may be more reasonable to take a baseball bat across your femurs, and dealing with broken legs, than handling regret gone viral.

We think “about what could have been.” We imagine life without regret, of things we might have done not having this dark burden. However, these possible choices are things we can never be sure of.

In my younger days I dreamed of attending college, and then going to seminary. I really thought that I wanted to be a pastor, in some small Lutheran church in the Midwest. But this would never happen. It was just an aspiration, a dream. And it wasn’t reality (even though I wish it had been).

I assure you there are much nastier and blacker regrets, there are things of which I am profoundly ashamed. But my point is this, they exist, they do unsettle us, and the present moment is corrupted by my past behavior.

You are not unique or alone. There are millions of sincere Christian believers who face what you are facing.

“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”

1 Cor. 10:13, NLT

I must tell you that there is a spiritual war. Satan is the enemy of our souls. He will bring to your mind fear and confusion. In scripture, he is called “the accuser of the brethren.” He has a diabolical ministry is to bring you down. He operates out of pure hatred, and he will never show you mercy.

We must develop a more scriptural method of wrapping up our minds in God’s Word. It stops and then alters the spiritual radiation from the enemy. The Word has tremendous power to halt the enemies attack. Ephesians 6:10ff tells of spiritual armor that must be utilized and worn.

“Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”

Ephesian 6:13




Luminosity, the state of being luminous, brilliance or radiance.

In Astronomy, the state in which a star radiates energy in every direction.

  • John 8:12, “Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
  • Lamentations 3:2, ‘He has led me into darkness, shutting out all light.”
  • Micah 7:8, “Do not gloat over me, my enemies! For though I fall, I will rise again. Though I sit in darkness, the Lord will be my light.”
  • Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.”
  • 2 Corinthians 4:7, “We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.

Personal Thoughts

We can only see, if we have a strong light to “discover” everything that is in close proximity to that light. Jesus declared that He was “the light of the world.” When He draws close to us (usually in our difficulties) we find that we still function, as light bearers to our very dark world.

Jesus has transferred His light, unto us, His Church. But being a light bearer isn’t always easy. And His church hiccups and skips as we try to absorb this reality. Disturbed and confused, we try to squeeze past its challenging reality. But, all we find is a dark confusion.This disturbs us. Obviously.

We need all that is light. Throughout the New Testament, we are notified that “we are children of the light.” This is the core of our personality. We have been separated from the works and deeds of darkness. We simply do not make very good sinners any more. We do try though, but we will never be successful sinners. We no longer have the aptitude for it.

Being the light has certain responsibilities. We have been irrevocably touched by God, and we must live with this.  

Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.”

2 Corinthians 5:17

Actually, we are at our best when we step against evil, and the darkness. Luminous, we step out and shine. We become all that the Lord Jesus desires. We have become “the Green Berets” of the Spirit. He places us on a hill. From there we shine.

I suppose that this is quite obvious to many of you, I suppose that I state nothing new to you. And yet I am quite aware that God’s grace touches us, and we “become electric.” His presence, makes us the light, and we shine for Him.

ybic, Bryan

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