Kids never hesitate to ask for a do-over. When trying to accomplish a task, they aren’t bashful to try as many times as it takes until they succeed. That’s how they learn.

As adults, we sometimes lose the ambition to ask for a do-over. Instead we resort to the familiar lines of “if only I could do it all over again” or “if I knew then what I know now.”

We can’t change history or our past, but it certainly can change us, especially if we’re brave enough to ask for a do-over.

Throughout my teenage and young adult years, I believed carrying a chip on my shoulder was easier than asking for a do-over. Because of poor decisions and veering off the path too often, I felt I wasn’t worthy of asking for another chance. I had settled for the hand that was dealt to me instead of asking for a new deck of cards in the game of life.

Trying to make sense of the life I’d created, I eventually began to blame my parents, as it was easier than accepting responsibility. I blamed Mom for being too nonchalant and giving me the freedom to make my own choices, and I blamed Dad for being so strict it made him scary. I even went so far as to hold a grudge against them for their own relationship, which, by the time I was a teenager, seemed to be on autopilot instead of the fairy-tale idea I had of how a marriage should be.

It wasn’t until I had my daughters that I realized being a parent doesn’t automatically make you an authority on life. Laying any kind of blame on my parents was unfair. They had provided me with the love and opportunity I needed, and I just choose to follow my own guidelines instead of embracing theirs.

Struggling along as a young mother of two, I desperately wanted to ask for a do-over, change paths and provide a home that was made up of the same values and morals my parents had instilled in me, although I had lost track of them for a while.

I began taking the girls to church, searching for a foundation they could build their lives on. Had I known then what I know now, I could have avoided all those years of being bitter and lost by embracing a truth that is greater than life itself.

While the girls learned Bible stories, I found myself buried deep beneath layers of bad decisions, guilt and anger. I’ll never forget the relief I felt when I learned about prevenient grace — the umbrella of forgiveness Jesus had been providing me all along. All I had to do was ask for it.

I’m thankful I had the freedom to choose my own journey, but I’m eternally grateful to have been given the opportunity to ask for do-over, through his sacrifice and return.

Embrace the blessing, and I hope you had a happy Easter.

Sandy Turner is a mom, grandma, former caretaker and retired journalist living in Missouri who writes a weekly column about home, family relationships and keeping positive during challenging times.

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