Forgiving Myself

Keeping yourself in bondage of un-forgiveness is just a trap and you do not realize that the longer you stay bound in this place, the harder it is to forgive yourself from your mistakes. It would be better to let yourself off the hook and let God deal with you as he sees fit. I am convinced from his resume with me that God never treats us as we deserve.

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Giving Yourself A Piece of Your Mind

Before getting into this week’s blog I want to say HAPPY THANKSGIVING!! We at Through The Winters Ministry love every single one of you. We are very thankful for all of you. Be blessed and keep the attitude of gratitude.

Ok here we go… my oldest daughter Rachel is a sweet kid; she has so many awesome qualities about her. She is dedicated, faithful, determined, caring and kind… Some of you may be saying, “Every parent thinks their child is like that, so why is she going on about how amazing “her” daughter is?” There is something about this wonderful child however, that could wear on a parent’s last nerve. You see, my Rachel is super forgetful. There was a period when she had to wear glasses, it was the same question over and over again, “Have you seen my glasses?” “Did you move my glasses?” She could literally spend 22 hours out of her day looking for those glasses, and then just lose them again. One day the family was downstairs watching television when I noticed Rachel was missing. I started to go upstairs, half way up I could hear Rachel having a very intense, firm even brutal conversation with… herself. She asked herself why she was so forgetful, why she could not get it and why she could never remember anything. With tears running down her face she went on to tell herself all the things she was not good at. Eventually, the one sided conversation died down, but I could not help but feeling sad for this darling child.

This story may seem funny to some, but we are all guilty of those same behaviors. There are so many people who are angry with themselves that because of their own inabilities and lack of willpower they fail to achieve their own expectations. One of the most common issues that my husband and I have to counsel young people about is sexual addiction. Many young people, as well as adults, battle with the urge to give into their sexual desires with no thought of the consequences. This struggle is real; tears have streamed down the faces of our young men and women who have been held captive to this relentless fight. I was once a captive to this struggle as well, so I am very sympathetic to the issues that come along with this battle. Many of these young people feel unclean, unworthy, insignificant and prohibited from accepting the messages that are delivered on any given Sunday, they feel separated from God and his promised words. They questioned the depths of God’s love when they are drowning in sin. Like Rachel, many people measure their victories by their failures.

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Laying Down Your Salvation

I think that self-forgiveness presents a greater battle than forgiving someone else. When you are offended by another person you can walk away, but how do you manage living with yourself? What kind of life do you have when you are with the person you hate? Can you walk away from yourself? No, not at all. How do you live with the person who is always disappointing you? What do you say to the person who keeps failing you? When we can’t forgive ourselves, we are no different from Rachel. You become your own devil, your own accuser. You don’t need the devil to shout out your failures or flaws; you have them all rehearsed in your head, many, many times over. Whenever good fortunes come your way, you sabotage them because you are trying to separate yourself from the blessing that you feel you are unworthy of. When you are wronged, you see it as well-deserved and a result of the mistakes you made. I wrote a blog on the pain of being your own worst enemy Check it out for more info.

My mother was a devout Christian prior to meeting my father. After getting married, there were things she started to do that she felt were good for her at the time. Little did she know that it was pushing her farther and farther from God. It soon got to the point where she had to decide between God or my father. She wanted to make things fresh with God and re-dedication her life to Him, but sadly she chose my father over God. My father was not going to share her heart with God. He was not going to give up the lifestyle he was living, and I imagine he didn’t want his wife to live a lifestyle different than his. The next 15 years would be one of the saddest times of her life as she was faced with much grief and conviction. My mother’s life spiraled into wrong choices, confusion, struggle, pain, hurt and loss. By the age of thirteen, I was feeling so burdened for my mother that I would find myself crying for her quite often. Even though my older brother and I witnessed to her as much as we could, she rejected all of our invitations.

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Give Up Your Job as Judge and Jury Over Yourself

It was not until my father had passed away that God intervened as if to say, “He’s gone now. Are you still going to choose him above me?” My mother did not believe she was worthy of God’s blessings because she felt that she had committed the most unforgivable sin. The battle for my mother’s heart was on. It wasn’t a matter of whether God was going to forgive her now, but one of whether she was willing to forgive herself. She finally realized that if God was fighting that hard for her soul, then he had already forgiven her. He cared more about having her heart than reminding her of her sins — and she gave her heart to him. The very first step to forgiving yourself is being willing to hand over the keys of judgment and condemnation to God. We have to be willing to give up our job as self-appointed judges and juries and stop trying the case for the mistakes we have made. We have to refuse to listen to the lies we tell ourselves — that the blood of Jesus cleanses all sins, except for the ones that we have committed.

Let’s think about the question Peter asked Jesus, “How many times do I have to forgive my brother?” Well, let’s change it to, “How many times do I have to forgive myself?” What was Jesus’ answer to Peter? 490 times. Does that mean that we commit the same sin 490 times? My thought is that we may bring to mind 490 times, the wrong we have done. It is our responsibility to forgive ourselves that many times. My mother stayed away from God for almost fifteen years and during this time I, myself, was spiraling downward, all because of the lack of God in the family structure. Keeping yourself in bondage of un-forgiveness is just a trap and you do not realize that the longer you stay bound in this place, the harder it is to forgive yourself from your mistakes. It would be better to let yourself off the hook and let God deal with you as he sees fit. I am convinced from his resume with me that God never treats us as we deserve.

“Well, Marsha how do I take that first step to forgive myself?” You need to be honest with God about the things that you are struggling with. Be honest with him. Tell him why you don’t think you deserve forgiveness. Then surrender your thinking over to God and allow him to create in you a clean heart and renew a right spirit within you. Read Psalm 51 and meditate on verse 4. If you need help, please email me or comment at your comfort below. Lastly if you would like to hear more about my testimony, read my book, “The Threshing: A Weapon Forged by Fire.” Sign up here to read the first three chapters for free. You can also buy the full book on Amazon.

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