I saw a sign which read:
“IN THE END WE REGRET THE CHANCES WE DIDN’T TAKE”
Am I being over-cautious by weighing this statement before taking it to heart? Is it really a good idea to jump at every opportunity?
I can easily recall many occasions when I’ve taken the plunge and regretted it, sometimes for many years. I also remember many incidents of hesitation and inaction for which I’ve later punished myself repeatedly. Yes, I’ve literally kicked myself for not taking a golden opportunity (a response just as foolish as self-deprivation through timidity). “He who hesitates is lost” they say-whoever “they” are. I used to be indecisive but now I’m not so sure…
I’ve made some gigantic mistakes in my life because I acted impulsively. That’s a polite way of admitting that I was stupid. More recently I’ve taken an over-cautious approach to opportunities out of fear of making another blunder.
I think the secret to this conundrum is the cultivation of wisdom, through the one who invented the stuff:
“Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3).
Take this wisdom, as found in the Bible, to heart. Couple it with faith, and when those golden opportunities come you stand a good chance of making the right decision and never regretting it. After learning from any past mistakes forgive yourself and go on.
And what about the “godly counsel” we hear so much about? If only it were a dependable option! If only all those people who are so quick to tell you what to do, or what they insist the Lord told them to tell you to do, had actually sought that same wisdom we need to be seeking! Yes, listen to them and weigh up what they say. But far more importantly, compare your options directly with the word of God, and judge what your own heart tells you by the truths you find there.
I’m convinced-I know-that God is not a killjoy: listen to the birds, watch the clouds blowing around the mountains, tickle a baby, and look at the beauty all around us. God is far from boring. He doesn’t require his followers to live dull, uninspiring, uneventful lives. So if the proverbial plunge seems like a good option, and if it doesn’t contradict his wisdom, and if it isn’t going to hurt anyone…take it!