Glancing at my watch as I exited the banquet hall, I knew I needed to hurry home. Exhaustion prevailed. 3 full days of a conference wiped me out.
Despite my best intentions, the magnetic pull of the dessert table triumphed. Just a quick nibble from the turtle cheesecake, and I’d be on my way.
A glance to my left derailed that plan. My favorite author, Lysa Terkeurst, sat at a table only steps away. Not a soul in line yet. As if riding on one of those moving airport sidewalks, my body glided straight over to her table.
Clearly, my mind lingered a little too long at the dessert table. Mouth opened. Words spilled out. Her kind eyes engaged mine. The words wouldn’t stop tumbling forth.
“Hi, Lysa…….I loved your sessions….blah, blah, blah…..I loved your book Who Holds The Key To Your Heart…..life-changing, blah, blah, blah……more blah, blah, blah.” Stop talking!!! Seriously, what are you saying right now? You are sounding like a rambling idiot. Someone put me out of my misery. Can she see my hands shaking? This is RIDICULOUS!
My mouth and mind simply refused to cooperate. She graciously engaged in my nonsense babble, proving to be exactly who I expected her to be. Her eye contact said, “I care what you are saying.”
As I half-jogged to my car, all I could hear in my head was, “What a waste of an opportunity. Seriously, Renee? That’s all you got? For someone who has written books that impacted your life, you said that?!!”
I wanted to hit rewind. I wanted a do-over.
I wanted to confidently approach Lysa and say, “Thank you for being obedient in your calling as a writer and speaker. Your words have greatly impacted my life. Every time I read one of your books or your devotions, I feel as if I’m reading about myself.”
But I wouldn’t get that do-over. And I couldn’t stop beating myself up. My cheeks burned as I drove home. The tape played over and over and over and over again.
I couldn’t hit rewind, but I sure knew how to hit replay.
Have you ever felt like that? Like you just wish you could have a do-over. Say it right. Do it right.
On any given day I find myself in a mess of sin. Why did I do that? Why didn’t I do that? Why did they do that to me? Why do I want to say that to them? The tapes play or replay far too often. We heap guilt on ourselves and regret our actions. In our hearts we know that forgiveness for sins is available through Christ. We know it. But do we live it?
How many times have I entered into conflict with a friend or loved one and rehashed the scenario in my mind a hundred different ways? How many times have I messed up with my kids and allowed the guilt to cover me rather than determining to seek forgiveness and ask God for help? How many times have I hurt someone, and allowed my pride to dominate humility causing anxiety and guilt to reign in my heart?
What if I hit the pause button instead?
Pause and pray: God please intervene like only You can. Give me a humble heart that seeks reconciliation. Lord, my feelings are so hurt. Heal my wounds and help me move out of this place. Lord- I messed up. Please forgive me. Help me to live under your forgiveness rather than my guilt.
The enemy loves to hit replay for us. God loves to play a new tape. One that whispers this:
Lamentations 3:22-24 “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
He is faithful. His mercies are new every single day. God gives do-overs. His mercies never come to an end.