These words “would’ve, should’ve and could’ve” are words that can plague us and cause us much distress. How often have you done something and afterwards you were bombarded with thoughts of how you “would’ve, should’ve or could’ve” done something better or different? This happens after the fact when there is no way for us to go back and change what took place.
When we are listening and being obedient to God, He will lead and guide us prior to the event and during the event, not “kick” us afterward. It is the enemy’s voice and tactics that come with “would’ve, should’ve and could’ve” and brings these horrible feelings of how we messed up and we are a terrible person.
God may very well speak to us after an event or occurrence, but it is in a very different voice than the one that the enemy uses. The enemy brings harsh words where we whip ourselves in our minds over what “would’ve, should’ve and could’ve” been said or done. In contrast, God comes with love. His voice is one of wisdom and instruction. He will give us insights to help us, He does correct us at times, but it will be with the voice of love and pointing out a specific plan of action.
When you are having thoughts that are bringing you distress, take a look at them – what are they saying and in what attitude do the thoughts come? Are they bringing condemnation to you? Are you in turmoil over these thoughts? Do they bring worry and shame? Are you beating yourself up with these thoughts? This is a good indication the thoughts are not from God and you should take action as the Word of God tells us in 2 Corinthians 10:5 “…take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ”. Exercise your spirit “muscle” and toss those thoughts out; reject them. Then replace them with thoughts of truth.
Remember that God’s voice is one of love and wisdom. He will give us insights, guidance, understanding and correction, but all of this is done without condemnation. He loves us passionately and He does teach us, but it is in a way that builds us up and does not tear us down.
In learning how to build your spiritual muscle and take control of your thoughts, remember to test your thoughts. Are they thoughts of condemnation and “would’ve, should’ve and could’ve”? Or are they loving thoughts of wisdom, instruction and correction?
I encourage you to take action and determine to look at your thoughts in a new way. Thoughts become words and actions, these become habits, and they develop our character and our destiny!