What does it mean to live without regret? Perhaps to you it means taking risks and living on the edge. As my friends and I say, “Ride or die”! However, for me living without regret means being able to look back on my day (or life) and not saying, “I wish I did,…..” or “I wish I never did,….”.
I’m going to share a personal story of regret and no regret. I remember ever so clearly the day I was told by my mothers nurse that I needed to go into her room and tell my mom that it was ok for her to die. It was early May 2001. I remember her withered body and no one having any answers as to why my mother was clinging to this lifeless life she had. My mothers nurse sat with our family and proceeded to tell us she believed my mom was holding on to something and that “something” was my wedding. I was instructed to go and let my mom know that it was fine for her to pass and not be at my fast approaching wedding day.
Everything in me did not want to say that to my mom, but I understood. I’ll never forget the dull lit room, the smell of her body wash in the air and holding her limp hand as I whispered, “Mom, I love you, but if you want to go see Jesus, you can go. Don’t feel like you need to hold on for me. I believe Jesus will roll back the sky and you can watch my wedding from Heaven. Mommy I love you. I will miss you forever.” With that I kissed her hand and her cheek, stroked her bald head and sat for a moment quietly with her. Not many days passed and my mom went to be with Jesus on May 14, 2001.
I have no regret “giving permission” for my mom to be with Jesus. I have no regret still holding my wedding day on June 22, 2001 (even though some weren’t too thrilled that we decided to celebrate in a time of mourning. Total side note – even though my mothers death was sad, we celebrate because she knew Jesus and lives with Him, and one day I will see her again). I have no regret over the many times I would stay up late sitting with mom over years and share stories of our day and pour out our hearts with one another. I do however regret the times where my filter wasn’t present and I may have said things I really should have kept inside. I regret the times that were perfect for me to say one more time, “I love you”, but never did. The Bible says in James 4:13-16 that no one is guaranteed another day, so can I challenge you all in something? Don’t live a life where you regret the things you did say or the things you didn’t say. Tell those around you how much you love them. Cherish every moment you have with them by enjoying the moments you share. Don’t allow petty differences to stand between you and your loved ones. Go the extra mile, seek forgiveness and extend forgiveness.
Is there someone in your life that if they were gone tomorrow you would say, “I wish I did,….” or “I wish I never….”? If so, take the necessary steps to share your heart. You have nothing, yet everything to lose.
Always remember, be brave. Have Courage.