For Such a Time as this (Part 5)

esther“After these things, when the wrath of King Ahasuerus subsided, he remembered Vashti, what she had done, and what had been decreed against her.” (Esther 2:1)

These things, what things? – a 180 day parade of the king’s riches; a seven day beer bash; and a little bitty incident where the king kind of forever banished his wife – like he could never, ever see her again. Then the party boy woke up, sobered up and wised up. But it was all too little, all too late, and he stared at his self-induced fate – Queen Vashti was gone and he missed her. How do you spell regret? But his servants suggested putting together a nice harem for the king “then let the young woman who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti.” (2:2-4) That idea pleased the king (imagine that) and King Hefner let it be so.

How do you spell regret? Some folks say they have no regrets because the sum total of their life has made them what they are, placed them where they are, and they wouldn’t change anything, the regretful parts included. I like that answer and kind of feel that way myself. Yes indeed…now…let’s get down and dirty honest. We all have regrets, lots of them. I regret not bringing a book home in high school, pitching out my dream to go to Penn State and winding up in a job I hated. I regret throwing a big stone at my brother and hitting him in the back of his leg. I regret throwing a stick into the spokes on his bicycle causing a very quick stop and my brother going over the handlebars. I regret the time I was listening to my stereo with headphones and my sister cranked up the volume and I knocked her on her backside. I regret having a brother and sister – I’m just kidding!

Selfishness, our own, and that of others, causes regret. Majoring in the minors called stuff, toys and noise, while minoring in the majors called God, people and relationships leads us right into the house of regret. Just living in a cursed and sin-filled world downpours regret and we’re bound to get wet.

The Bible has prescription for avoiding regret such as “Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.” (Romans 12:17, 18) His word also teaches us to “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:3, 4) These things will bring no regrets. But what of those things already deposited in the bank of regret? The Apostle Paul says, “…I press on…forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead…” (Philippians 3:12b, 13)

And again, we are here on this earth, this stage, right here, right now for such a time as this – are we majoring in the minors and minoring in the majors leading to regret or are we “laying hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of [us].” (Philippians 3:12c)

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