Have you ever heard the phrase, “I could’ve kicked myself!”? It’s a funny phrase, especially to visual people who can imagine what that would look like. It’s usually used when one regrets something they’ve done e.g. “I could’ve kicked myself for not getting that when it was on special!” or “I could’ve kicked myself for saying that!”
It’s actually really difficult to literally kick yourself, though. Reflexes kick in and you stop yourself before you get hurt (not that I’ve tried it).
Regret is a painful thing
All that aside, what this phrase is really talking about is ‘regret’. The Cambridge online dictionary defines regret as being ‘
Often, we can say things that we wish we could take back. For instance, recently as I was taking some garlic bread my daughter had prepared from the oven, I joked about the multiple layers of foil wrapping saying, “Looks like they got the work-experience kid to wrap these!”
I’d assumed they had been pre-packaged, but I quickly realised I was mistaken when I saw my daughter’s look of shock followed by, “Mum! I wrapped those!”
Thankfully, we just laughed at my careless words, but it’s not always that easy. Sometimes what makes sense in our heads comes out of our mouths sounding very different.
Often we can find ourselves regretting unintentionally causing pain to a friend, be it through careless words, actions or even lack of action. Though causing pain wasn’t our intention, there’s many a time miscommunications occur and our words can be taken the wrong way.
This is something most of us have been guilty of at some point, and we need to be alert to the fact that the enemy loves to use these opportunities to cause division.
It’s very likely to be something that will happen many times in our lives. Inevitably, people will say things that might offend us, and we will say things that offend others whether we mean to or not. But, we can choose to offended or we can choose to forgiving—knowing that we ourselves have been guilty of the same.
Ecclesiastes chapter 7 verses 20-22 says:
The good news is that, though we may mentally beat ourselves up over regret, it’s not the end of the story. We may regret what we say and do, but God is quick to forgive and set us straight again.
As 2 Corinthians chapter 7 tells us, some sorrow is good for us:
Sometimes regrets cause us to step up—step up in our character and to step up in our awareness. That’s when the pain of regret can turn into something very beautiful. We are continually being transformed into the likeness of Jesus and, through our imperfections, His light and glory is seen brighter.
We are weak, but His grace is strong in us and, as we carry the forgiveness of Christ, we in turn learn to forgive others, for we know we are all sinners who have been saved.
Romans chapter 3 verse 22 says,
Through each mistake, we grow more earnest in our desire to be better, to be more caring, and to be more thoughtful. And, we are renewed daily by the love of Christ.
Rebecca and her husband have four children and live on the Sunshine Coast, Australia. Rebecca writes for various publications including print, online and commercial. She is the author of two books: ‘First to Forty’ and ‘Pizza and Choir’. For more information you can find Rebecca at: http://www.rebeccamoore.life, Facebook: Rebecca Moore - Author, Instagram: rebeccamoore_author
Rebecca Moore's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/rebecca-moore.html