Sometimes we pick the wrong side.

In the heat of a fight or an argument, or as a result of discussions in the aftermath of a disagreement, we make a choice we think is the right one, given the facts and opinions we have at hand. Weeks, months, years, later we begin to realize it was the wrong one.

At first we don’t want to admit it even to ourselves, but the evidence slowly begins to mount, and that nagging feeling won’t leave us that we’ve chosen and spoken wrongly. So one day we wake up to face the facts. We do the adult thing, and admit to ourselves we picked the wrong side.

What do we do then?

It happens to all of us at one time or another. We choose the wrong side or someone doesn’t choose our side when they should have. We are not born wise; instead we learn from our mistakes.

I pray for grace and healing and forgiveness wherever you find yourself on either side of this messy divide. If you chose the wrong side, as painful as the realization is, don’t beat yourself up, because your Father won’t do that to you. Ask for forgiveness and move on. If you’re the one whose side who wasn’t chosen, I pray you find the grace to forgive when asked to do so.

Accept this life lesson for what it is. Learn from it. Take responsibility for the choice you made and the pain you caused, but move on with the new knowledge gained from not making the right decision in the face of a tough situation. It happened. Forgive yourself. Forgive others. Learn. Move on.

There will be consequences for the choices we’ve made. Some of those will really hurt, be  really ugly. Some things will never again be the same. The rift caused may be too big to navigate. The bad influence you wielded may have led others to a different belief than the one you now have through hindsight and conviction. The understanding of what you have done might be so painful that your heart breaks as your mind tries to comprehend it. You cannot go back and undo what you’ve done or said, but you do get to decide what you will do from here on out.

And, even here, the Comforter is present. He will walk us through the navigation of sorrow over past choices, and lead us into the truth of what to do next. ‘Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.’ (2 Cor 7:10).

These situations are humbling. Let them do the work in you that they are supposed to. When we accept responsibility, we grow. When we ask for and/or give forgiveness, we grow. When we face the fact that no matter how long we’ve walked with the Lord, we can still make bad decisions, we embrace humility. And. We. Grow. 

©Debbie Mendoza, May 2018.


Get a copy of Debbie Mendoza’s Exodus: A Journey Through Divorce on Amazon if you need spiritual help for yourself or for someone going through a divorce.
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