If I Knew Then . . .
In his great mercy [God] has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. 1 Peter 1:3
On the way to work, I listened to the song “Dear Younger Me,” which asks: If you could go back, knowing what you know now, what would you tell your younger self? As I listened, I thought about the bits of wisdom I might give my younger, less-wise self. Most of us have thought about how we might do things differently—if only we could do it all over again.
But the song illustrates that even though we have regrets from our past, all our experiences have shaped who we are. We can’t change the consequences of our choices or sin. Praise God we don’t have to carry the mistakes around with us. Because of what Jesus has done! “In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead”! (1 Peter 1:3).
If we turn to Him in faith and sorrow for our sins, He will forgive us. On that day we’re made brand new and begin the process of being spiritually transformed (2 Cor. 5:17). It doesn’t matter what we’ve done (or haven’t done), we are forgiven because of what He’s done. We can move forward, making the most of today and anticipating a future with Him. In Christ, we’re free!
Dear Lord, I’m so thankful that through You we can be free of the burdens of the past—the mistakes, the pain, the sins—that hang so heavy. We don’t need to carry around regret or shame. We can leave them with You.
For further study, read Live Free.
Leave your heavy burdens with God.
Imagine meeting Jesus face to face—after knowingly denying ever knowing Him. Would we tell Him we haven’t been able to forgive ourselves? Would He know our heart and understand?
During the Last Supper, Peter couldn’t imagine he would deny Jesus once—let alone three times (John 13:37–38). But then the unthinkable happened (Matt. 26:69–75). Later, however, Jesus gave Peter three opportunities to express love to the One who so mercifully forgave him (John 21:15–18).
In that love and forgiveness Peter found a way forward. We too can move forward from the sins of our past through the love and forgiveness of Christ.