But now we’re slipping at the edge,
holding on to something we don’t need.
Curled up on her bed, sobbing into a pillow, wondering if the tears were ever going to end. The reminders of a past she isn’t proud of and moments she wishes she could take back fight for her attention. She’s haunted by who she was, what she’s done, and mistakes she’s made. She’s a slave to regret, and bound by guilt. She’s broken and far from whole.
She stands in front of a mirror and sees a skeleton of who she used to be. Stained by the choices she’s made and scarred from the past. She wonders if she’ll ever be made whole.
That used to be me.
I used to be that girl, who carried around her burdens and her past with her everywhere she went. I used to hold on to my mistakes and my regrets, not able to let it go. Not able to forgive myself or the ones who have hurt me.
I didn’t realize how tightly I held on to things until I lost it all.
May. The month I learned to let everything go. I was in pieces, broken by my failures, and shattered by an ended relationship. I had lost my way, only to find myself in the darkness and confusion of a path I should not have taken. I was unsure of myself, of my hopes and dreams, of my choices. The only thing I was sure of were my regrets.
I had turned to so many things for comfort in my time of uncertainty and brokenness. So many things, yet not the One thing that could heal me and make me whole. The things I turned to turned out to be the things that would cause even more pain and regret.
It was like a hurricane tore through my life, and I was left standing in the rubble. Everything was left in pieces at my feet. The walls I had built up to hide the parts of me I didn’t want people to see were destroyed. The glass windows that I had so often looked out to watch other people’s seemingly perfect lives were in pieces. The shelves of trophies and achievements were covered in the dust and debris. The only thing that stood tall were my boxes and boxes of regret. And I carried them with me, for they were the only thing I felt I had left.
I used to recognize myself, it’s funny how reflections change.
When we’re becoming something else, I think it’s time to walk away.
Suddenly, it was the end of May and I was back home for the summer, sitting in my empty bedroom. I was weary and tired of the load I was carrying. I was ready to be whole again. That was the month that I would go through radical change.
I fell to my knees and cried out to a God I wasn’t sure would take me back. I knew then how the prodigal son felt. I didn’t feel worthy to be taken back as His child, for I deserved nothing more than what a servant would be given. But He reached down and helped me to my feet. He dried my tears. He took the boxes packed full with mistakes, regrets, guilt, and shame, and laid them at His feet. He took my broken pieces and made them whole. Even then, I still reached for the regrets I had for so long held on to. They felt like a piece of me. But He whispered to me, “let it go.”
Everything that’s broken, leave it to the breeze.
He removed the stains, mended my wounds, pieced back together my heart, and gave me a new identity. No longer was I the skeleton of a girl, clothed in her own shame and brokenness. Suddenly I was whole and full of life and light, clothed in His love, grace, and kindness. He breathed new life into my lungs and gave me a new purpose. He gave me the courage to let it go.
Letting it go wasn’t easy. I’ve had to accept the consequences that come with some of the choices I made. Sometimes I still look over my shoulders at where I used to be. I’m still not terribly proud of some of the things I’ve done. Some days I still feel stained and broken. But my God, my Rock, my Redeemer, my Savior reminds me that He has made me whole. He has redeemed me and given me a hope for the future He has for me. He has made me new, for His purpose and for His glory. He has turned my story of regret into a story of redemption.
And as I sit in this cold coffee shop, listening to James Bay, and reflecting on how much I have grown, I realize that letting it all go let me become so much more. By losing the burdens and shame and guilt, I gained freedom, forgiveness, and grace.
In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace
Maybe you have your share of regret. Maybe you have boxes packed full of the memories of the mistakes you made. Maybe you feel as though you’re going to break from the weight of these burdens. Through reading this blog of mine, I hope you are pointed to Christ. He is the ultimate healer and restorer of our souls. He is the only one who can take away our burdens and shame and purify our hearts and give us clean hands. He is the only one who can redeem our stories.
I hope that you will loosen your grip on the things that you are clinging to. I hope that you find courage and strength to ask Him to help you let go of the fears, the pain, the shame, the guilt, and the hopelessness. I pray that you leave your regrets at His feet. I pray that you let Him unpack those heavy boxes you carry with you. I pray that you learn to let it go.
So come on and let it go, just let it be.