Sometimes we make decisions and ask, “What was I thinking?” after the fact. Ready. Fire. Aim. That can leave us filled with regret or having buyer’s remorse. It’s not that God can’t make good use of passionate people with itchy trigger fingers. He just has to get them to a point where they steady their own impulses. If you like to strike while the iron is hot, you are in good company. The Bible tells us King David and St. Peter had those tendencies too.
“Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear” (John 18:10). That was a big oops. “One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful. Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her” (2 Samuel 11:2,4). That was a very big oops.
It helps to live long enough to become wiser and fatigued. Maybe that’s why Peter and David were able to give this advice later in life: “Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming” (1 Peter 1:13). That’s a good idea. “Let the one who is wise heed these things and ponder the loving deeds of the Lord” (Psalm 107:43). That’s a very good idea.