If we live with regrets because of failure, we discover our God is a God of multiple plans. In Jeremiah 29:11 the word "plans" is plural. "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'" God has good plans for every possible circumstance.
Past points of disobedience need not make us give up in defeat. God can still cause all things to work together for His glory and our good.
The psalmist assures us of God's constant presence and writes, "You hem me in-behind and before" (Psalm 139:5). God goes behind us, much as a mother goes behind her child, picking up what he drops and trying to cover up his mistakes. Even if the mistake has been the child's fault, the mother is still willing and eager to help.
If our children are older and we fear we've failed them, we can commit them with confidence to God. "Dear Lord, go behind me, bringing my family into Your presence despite my failures," we pray, and God who is "behind us," makes all things, even our failures, work together for good if we trust Him.
A friend once showed artist John Ruskin an expensive handkerchief on which a blot of ink had left an ugly mark.
"Nothing can be done with this now," said the friend, preparing to discard it.
Ruskin asked if he could have the handkerchief. He later returned it to his friend, who was amazed when he saw it. The artist had drawn a unique design with India ink using the ugly blot as the focus for his creation. What had once appeared worthless was now a treasured work of beauty.
Thank You, Lord, that I need never despair. You can turn my mistakes into miracles.
"The Lord has heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer" (Psalm 6:9).