Don’t confuse having no regrets right now with having no regrets later.
We’ve all heard the advice: Live your life in such a way that you will have no regrets.
That’s not bad long-term advice. However, living with a no-regrets-at-the-moment philosophy is far different from living with a no-regrets-long-term philosophy of life.
Living your life with a no regrets right now without the long-term ramifications in view can end up costing you a lifetime of regrets.
Think about Adam and Eve—the fruit on the forbidden tree looked good. It appears they had bought into the no-regrets-at-the-moment philosophy and thus took a big ol juicy bite. No regrets there.
But now catch the next verse: “Then the eyes of both of them were opened…” (Genesis 3:7).
It is amazing quickly “living with no regrets” can turn into “uh oh”.
- It’s the kids on prom night that thought it was cool “spiking” the punch but later finding themselves facing a sharp curve and a deep ditch inebriated.
- It’s the young lady who had no regrets at the moment of passion but is now looking at a pregnancy test that reads “positive”.
- It’s the compulsive shopper being smothered by a mountain of credit card debt.
- It’s the undisciplined diabetic going through the painful experience of trying to walk with no feeling in their feet and some of their toes missing.
- It’s the party-hardy sinner one minute after death.
I could keep giving examples, but the lesson is clear: Indulging in the moment may drive away regrets temporarily, but a lifetime of no-regrets-in-the-moment indulgences can sure lead to a lot of very sad and permanent regrets later on.
This is a good reminder to all of us who live in a “living for the weekend” society.