Q: I thought I was doing the right thing when I abandoned my wife and kids for another woman over 20 years ago, but I was wrong. Now my kids won’t have anything to do with me; they don’t even want me around at Christmas. I don’t have a question, but I sure wish I could go back and do things differently. — C.G.
A: One of life’s hardest lessons is that we cannot change the past. We can regret it, we can learn from it, we have to live with its consequences, but we cannot change it. As the Bible says, “You have planted wickedness, you have reaped evil” (Hosea 10:13).
But listen: You can change the future — with God’s help. And that’s what I hope you will do, because right now you’re on a dead-end road (as the rest of your letter makes clear). Jesus’ warning is true: “Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it” (Matthew 7:13).
What should you do? First, take your burden of guilt and failure to Jesus’ cross, and leave it there. God loves you in spite of the wrongs you’ve committed, and Christ died on the cross to take away your sins. Turn your life over to him today, and put your future into his hands. Then ask him to guide you to a church where you’ll hear God’s Word and also find encouragement from others who can help you grow spiritually.
Then do what you can to keep contact with your family, even if they aren’t as open to you right now as you’d like. Tell them you know that you’ve failed them and that you regret the hurts you’ve caused. The road to reconciliation may be long, but start on it today.
Write to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or go to BillyGraham.org.