Let’s face it, we all sin and make mistakes. We’re human – ain’t that what we all say? How do we know we are mistaken? We feel this stinging, uneasy feeling that we commonly know as guilt. And oftentimes it stays with us through our memory. Why does it exist? Is it even necessary?
When memories burn
Mistakes we make get stuck in our minds. That’s why they say experience is the best teacher (by the way, I disagree with that). When we make mistakes, we remember – because we’ experience what we have to lose. So we do our best to avoid it the next time around if that something we’ll lose is precious to us.
And these mistakes come with a price. This ‘best teacher’ is often times accompanied by a friend called guilt. Now don’t misunderstand, guilt is not a bad thing. In fact it is something created and fashioned by God to help us feel remorse for the mistakes we’ve committed in order to help us decide not to make that mistake again.
Guilt is something good when you don’t let it control you. It is something that’s supposed to bring us back to God on our knees – having a repentant heart and a renewing of our minds. But once you let it play around in your mind and emotions, then it becomes a thorn in your neck.
There is no rewind button
Once you’ve made a mistake it’s done. There’s nothing you can do to rewind it. There’s nothing you can do to undo the guilt. There’s no rewind button, no remake, no second take. You have to face it and deal with it. Acknowledge you’ve made a mistake, acknowledge the guilt. Live on choosing to do right in light of that experience.
There is no rewind button but there’s also no need to keep on replaying the mistake in your head. There’s no need in replaying that guilty feeling over and over again. Living in guilt is definitely not pleasing to God.
“Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead” - Philippians 3:13
Look forward. Don’t look back. Don’t let the past bring you down. If God has forgiven you, who are you that you do not forgive yourself?