“Don’t look back. What happened then is now part of your story, a chapter in your life. Reference it, remember it, learn from it, but don’t look back longingly. You can’t have yesterday again. It would impoverish your today.”
Certainly I would do life differently for today I hold the wisdom learned from yesterday. Experience is a worthy teacher, but, it had to unfold exactly as it did for me to cultivate my lessons? Each of those moments has molded my today.
“My child. Don’t look back. Doing so longingly discredits where I have brought you in your journey. Your days of foolishness and frivolity tested my patience. Your nights of deepest disobedience sorrowed my soul.”
Indeed, I was young and foolish. Every one of my days was filled with deprivation. Every night’s bed was one of wantonness and licentiousness. My soul’s companion was unfathomable loneliness. My desperate prayer was unheard.
“No, it was not unheard. It was spoken from an insincere place within you that did not truly want to know or love me. Like your fellow travelers on that path, you called upon me only in your times of travail.”
But, some of the times were good times. Some of the experience was enjoyable. The music that filled the air invigorated an otherwise dull existence. The young people were excitedly filled with a casual indifference to the world scurrying about us.
“Of course you remember it that way. Most of the experiences were not good. Your life confused and concerned those who loved you. Understanding your disregard for maturity and responsibility was impossible for them.”
Yes, that’s true. And they loved me anyway. Oh, if only I could return and let them know how sorry I am. I stole their peace and dishonored their trust. I was deeply dishonest and deceptive regarding the man I had become.
“My son, don’t you understand? A father’s love, a mother’s love, a spouse’s love is unconditional as is my love. Through it all, it was not a question of when we should stop loving you, but when you would learn to love yourself.”
Lord, have I become a man pleasant in your sight? Would my father, my mother smile upon seeing my face again? Could they ever forgive me for the shame endured because of my indiscretions? Have I become a man worthy of your love?
“For I loved you so much that I gave my only begotten Son to you. You are also my son whom I can love no less. If you live the truth of Jesus, you will not perish but have life everlasting with me. Does that answer your questions?”
Of course, John 3:16. Yes, Lord. Amen.