There are days I wish I could just turn off my head. Ever been there? I can still find myself thinking about the handful of stupid things I did in college that I wish so badly I could just erase from my existence. I think about all of the times I have allowed myself to waste instead of seeking after God.
Rather than focusing on the here and now, and what Christ has done and is currently doing in our lives we so easily look back at where we have been and what we have done and say to ourselves, “you don’t deserve x, y and z. You’ll never be anything. Your past will always depict your future. You’ve already blown it big time so why even try.”
I have found it a lot easier to forgive others than it is to forgive myself.
Why is it so hard to forgive ourselves? Why can we look at someone else and point out all the good that God has done in their life and how far they have come, but we look at ourselves and still see yesterday’s junk? Things God has forgiven us for but we still hang on to because we can’t believe that we could ever be removed from that choice, that mistake, that year of stupid, from the rebellion that has led to self-hate.
Psalms 103:12 says, “He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.”
When we go to God in genuine repentance, and we turn from the sin in our life, He wipes us clean. It’s hard to fathom that the one who could, and has every right to, hold us accountable chooses to forgive. And He not only chooses to forgive, but He sacrificed His only son so He could do just that.
Because of that amazing sacrifice, we do not have to be who we were before we knew Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” That is an amazing verse full of hope and excitement, but it is also very clear as to how we become new; we must belong to Christ not participating in the ways of our old sin. We can’t have one foot in God and one in the world and hope to become new. But once we fully surrender ourselves to Jesus Christ, then we belong to Him and are made new.
So maybe you are at the point in life that you have fully given yourself to God; you are no longer participating in the past sins that have you feeling so stained, but you still feel as though what you have done will keep you from doing or living a certain life. For example, if you got pregnant outside of marriage from either a relationship or one night stand you will always have the responsibility of loving and caring for that child. You will also have that baby’s daddy in your life in one way or another. Even if he isn’t there, his absence is still a part of your life and the life of your child. So you might find yourself thinking, how will I ever enter into a Godly relationship. Who is going to want to marry me? Or, how can I be used at church? People will just see my past sin instead of God.
The fact is that yes we are forgiven but we will have to live with the consequences of our sins, but “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). God can take our junk and use it for good. He can take us as we are and align us back to His will, using everything in our lives to bring honor and glory to Him. He can take a person who used to be a drug addict and use them to reach people I could never reach because I don’t understand what that kind of addiction is like. This does not give us an excuse to sin, but rather it gives us another reason to praise God! For even when our lives are full of sin, God still sees His child whom He longs for. He is still able to use us in mighty ways.
King David, in the bible, was called the man after God’s own heart; yet, he committed adultery and had the husband killed to try and cover his sin. But God was still able to use him in powerful ways. But David went to God, repented and then moved on and allowed God to continue working in him and through him.
Accept God’s forgiveness in your life. Know that yes you are a sinner, for we all have sinned and fallen short, but you are also a child of God who can be used by God in mighty ways. Repent. Walk away from those sins. Move on and allow God to use you. Take the focus off of yourself and put it on the cross.
I hope you all have an awesome weekend.
Coming up on Monday: Worship