We recently renovated a bathroom upstairs which included taking our bedroom closet and incorporating it into the new space. This meant rebuilding a closet on the other side of the room. We had complete freedom to build this closet any way we wished. I had a vision for the closet layout but when the tradesman framed the closet, I realized my original plan wouldn’t work. So I redesigned it and Initially I was thrilled.
However, a day or two later I suddenly had a change of heart. I realized if I had designed the closet in a different way it would have been way more functional: the shelving that was installed would have been more accessible and it would have used the space better. Gahhh- I have closet builders remorse! I laid awake that night and woke up early the next morning thinking “What have I done!?!” and honestly what can you do? It is built at this point. The chance to change is gone. It is what it is. But I’m sitting here writing still not able to shake the remorse. The feeling of wanting to go back in time and do it again. The internal self script of “Stupid, stupid, stupid! Why didn’t you see the better way earlier Kelly!”.
As I was beating myself up this morning I was thinking about my need to write this reflection. Here’s what God stirred in me. Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us often brings up the belief that because God came to be with us in Jesus he has experienced all that we have experienced. And there is truth in this. He has felt the earth beneath his feet and the sun and rain on his face. He has experienced hurt, hunger and pain, love, loneliness and loss. But he highlighted to me this morning that he has never experienced remorse (a deep sense of regret or guilt for a decision made or a missed opportunity). God knows the sadness and pain of an outcome that isn’t according to his plan (trust me: Adam and Eve, Noah, Sodom and Gomorrah, Moses, the people of Israel in general, my mistakes… he knows this pain and sadness!). But God doesn’t sit it a self script of “Well that was stupid! How could I have been so dumb to design things that way. Gah, if I could just go back and fix it! Well I guess it is what it is. Dang!”. No.
God made the world and everything in it and called it good. God made us in his image. Do we live in this world perfectly? No. We’ve made a mess. But God doesn’t think… well if I could just rewind and do it again I’d do it differently. God had this story of redemption, this story of the coming messiah, this story of Jesus, redeeming and bringing his people back into holiness, righteousness and into a relationship with him before the whole thing began. Ephesians 1:4 says “Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love.” God would not go back and change anything he has done. It all has a place and a space.
Everything can be redeemed in Jesus. That’s the point of Christmas; of Jesus a Saviour. We don’t need to go back and fix anything, he can redeem anything and make it good. He can bring it into his plan and purposes. Would we all come to him this Christmas season with everything we are and place it in his lap knowing that he can redeem anything and make it good.
Now if he could just do something about my closet!
Written by Kelly Beitz