“ For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.” – Jeremiah 29:11-14.
I did not decide to do the No Regret series because I wanted each of us to realize how much we have messed up in our walk with God by languishing on our mistakes. This series is not about how many times we we got off track or how many things we would do differently. This series is not about hopping into our Delorean time machine to go back in time to avoid mistakes, stop from making bad decisions and looking before we leap. And it is not about feeling disappointed, sad, guilty, remorseful or even ashamed, because we failed in our eyes and more importantly in God’s eyes.
This series is about living a life without regret as God intended us to live, which means we move past the regrets and wishes. We can do so by first remembering that there are no accidents with God. He has a perfect timing for everything He does. Isaiah 46:9–10 tells us, “…remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,”
God has a perfect plan and there are no accidents with Him. The family you were born into was no accident. The country you live in, the language you speak, the friends you have, your weaknesses, mistakes you have made, poor decisions—none of them are accidents to God. Failures with your spouse and children, things you wish you had done differently, painful experiences—none of them are accidents to God.
Ruth is a short story that teaches us there are no accidents with God. Everything has a purpose. Everything has a reason. Our seeming chance decisions are not chance. Ephesians 1:11 tells us that God “according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,” Ruth shows us that truth played out in the everyday happenings of very ordinary people.
We all have decisions we regret. We have done things that did not turn out the way we intended or hoped. We all wish we had done things differently. So we all have regrets. And we may feel stuck. But in those times when we experience regret we need to remember there are no accidents with God.
God overrides our sins. Even when we really blow it. Even when you feel what you have done has ruined your life. Even when we miss the opportunities God gives us. Even when you are still experiencing the long-term consequences of a bad mistake. Remember there are no accidents with God. God in His sovereignty can work out everything for our good.
- What thought or idea expressed in this devotional resonated with you? Why?
- Was there anything in this devotional that you found to be comforting? Why or why not?
- Read Isaiah 45:7 and Proverbs 19:21: What do these verses say about how God directs people, circumstances, and events?
- Read Romans 8:28 and Genesis 50:20: What do these verses tell you about God using bad things for good purposes?