We will spend time with Nehemiah. Before we do, let’s do a quick exercise. Imagine you are on your deathbed. You knew this day was coming. The doctors said it will be just a short time now. There is nothing more they can do. Knowing this life will soon be over, you begin to sink. You stare blankly for a time, then begin reflecting. You pose several introspective questions. A flood of emotion envelops you. "Why this overwhelming emotion?" you wonder.
You search for the source of your deepening heartache. Then, you pinpoint it. You are bothered by this question, “Did my life as a father really matter?”
Now, consider this emotional scene. In it, are you wearing a contented smile as you look back on a life built on sharing things that are timeless, meaningful and eternal?
Or, are you lying in a bed of regret knowing you lived for misguided, incomplete reasons and realize there is nothing you can do to regain those days? This instant clarity gives you a little comfort.
Where will your thoughts take you on that day? Will you delight in contented remembering or suffocate from claustrophobic regret?
Chances are, God is already spurring you toward that full, contented life. The question is, “What next?” What can you be doing now to be certain you will rest contented as a father and the leader of your family?
Want to read more about overcoming failure and regret as a dad? We wrote a Field Guide just for you called Removing Doubt to help dads overcome failure and regret.