Forgiveness – Part 2

In my last post, I wrote about the messy subject of forgiveness. In that post, I mainly dealt with forgiving another person. But today I want to talk about something that goes a bit deeper – forgiving ourselves.

Sometimes it can feel easier to forgive other people than it is to forgive ourselves, if we have sinned or made a mistake that we deeply regret. We tend to hold ourselves to a higher standard than we do other people. We tend to be our own worst critic. And we tend to beat ourselves up when we stumble.

Why should we forgive ourselves?

1 – Grace through Jesus

We all are going to make mistakes because we are human. It says in Romans 3:23 that we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” But God offers us a beautiful gift called grace. If we have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, that means we are forgiven. It says in Psalm 103:12 that “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” And it says in Micah 7:19, “You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.” And it says in Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Please know that if Jesus is your Lord and Savior, then you are forgiven. You have been washed clean. There is nothing from your past that can entangle you anymore.

2 – God wants you to

Forgiveness is a command. If we are commanded to forgive others, then doesn’t that mean we should also forgive ourselves? God wants you to live in peace. He didn’t send His only Son to die for your sins so that you could live in misery for the rest of your life. God loves you with an immeasurable love. And that means He wants you to live with contentment, not regret. If one of your children made a mistake, wouldn’t you want them to move on with their life and live in peace? Then how much more does your heavenly Father feel the same about you?

3 – You are not higher than God

If God has forgiven us, shouldn’t we also forgive ourselves? Some might think that is too easy and that we shouldn’t let ourselves off the hook. But God no longer condemns you, so you should no longer condemn yourself either. When we do not forgive ourselves, it is like saying that we know more than God does, we are smarter than Him, and we know what can and can’t be forgiven. Jesus already paid the full price for your sins. There is no balance on your debt. Yet, too often, we live our lives as though we must continue to pay.

4 – Satan doesn’t want you to

I love what R.T. Kendall says in his book How To Forgive Ourselves Totally, “I have believed for a long time that one of the ways to know the will of God is to imagine what the devil would want you to do—then do the opposite.” This is so true about so many things in life. And one in particular is the matter of forgiveness, whether we are forgiving someone else or forgiving ourselves. The devil is the father of lies (John 8:44) and the accuser (Revelation 12:10). So he is going to use any lie and accusation he can to keep you from living freely in Jesus. The enemy will tell you that you can’t possibly forgive yourself because what you did was too awful. The enemy will also tell you that God hasn’t really forgiven you, because that would be too easy. We must stand strong against the enemy and his tactics. And one way to do that is to forgive yourself.

If you are plagued with guilt and unforgiveness towards yourself, please prayerfully release it to the Lord. Explain to God how you are feeling about your regrets. Tell Him that you are ready to move on with healing. Let Him know that you are handing all your sins and past mistakes over to Him. And you are not going to pick them back up again. Each time the devil tries to remind you of your failures, tell him that Jesus has already forgiven you and that he cannot hold that over you anymore. If you are consistent and determined, you can find peace. Remember that you are forgiven and deeply loved.

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

10 Comments on “Forgiveness – Part 2

  1. This is such an important thing to talk about. Forgiving ourselves is tough. We can only do it with the Lord’s help. And often it is repeatedly overcoming that feeling of guilt and not being worthy. Jesus loves us and has forgiven us. May we extend that grace to ourselves and let go of our past.
    A beautiful message Bridget
    Blessings my friend 🤗💙

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are absolutely right – we need the Lord’s help. He can give us true freedom. And I agree that forgiving ourselves is something we might need to revisit many times. The devil will be quick to remind us of our shortcomings and it can be so easy to feel guilty all over again. We have to be persistent about pushing it aside and reminding ourselves of the forgiveness we have already received. Thank you, dear friend! And blessings to you! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post, and an extremely sensitive subject, but probably the most important. Most important because, if we have forgiven others but not ourselves, then our forgiveness is incomplete. As you touched on, we can be our own worst critics, beating ourselves up due to past mistakes. We are often not willing to let ourselves off the hook, but do so with others. I think the reasons why can be pretty simple, we don’t want to make the same mistakes again. Or they can be quite complex because of the nature of the transgression. We feel we don’t deserve the forgiveness.

    But beyond that, this is not something our generation, and the ones prior were taught. Self care, self love, etc. were considered frivolous and self pitying. I’ve always tried to instill their own value in my kids; they can do anything they set their minds to, they are worthy of the best of the best. But do I give myself the same message? Sometimes, but it’s certainly not the majority.

    Thank you for sending this crucial message to ponder and be reminded that if God says we are worthy, then isn’t that enough?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, you have made many good points here. So very true about caring for ourselves. Many do see this as being selfish. But the Bible says to love our neighbor as we love ourselves, which implies that we should love ourselves. I think God loves us so much that it hurts His feelings when we put ourselves down or don’t respect ourselves. Thank you for pointing this out. I think this is important when it comes to forgiving ourselves. May we learn to love ourselves fully in order to extend ourselves the grace and mercy that God has already given us. Blessings to you and yours! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      • …”love our neighbor as we love ourselves, which implies that we should love ourselves.” Yes, excellent point! ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  3. This one is a really great post for me. I find it so much easier to forgive others than to forgive myself. And like that Micah Tyler song (New Today) goes I can be so hard on myself thinking that God must be mad at me when He loves me so much.

    These words here are really comforting:

    God wants you to live in peace. He didn’t send His only Son to die for your sins so that you could live in misery for the rest of your life.

    These words are especially wonderful to hear when you’re a person who tends to push yourself too hard. When I push too hard it causes me anxiety so I am really learning to slow it down and say no to things instead of trying to take everything on. I need that peace. So I need to show myself the grace that God shows us and remember that His mercies are new every day.

    Thanks so much for sharing, Bridget. Be blessed. ❤❤❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your comment brought tears to my eyes. Today I was praying about some things that were weighing on my heart. And your words have helped me to see that I was also pushing myself too much. So thank for that reminder. How amazing it is that God helps us to help each other! He is such a loving Father. I am so glad this post encouraged you. And thank you for encouraging me too. Extending grace towards ourselves is something we might need to do on a daily basis. But if we lean into Him, He will gently guide us along the way. Blessings my friend 💕

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am so glad my comment helped you. His timing and mercy is amazing isn’t it? He does work in mysterious and wonderful ways. 💕

        Liked by 1 person

  4. “… one of the ways to know the will of God is to imagine what the devil would want you to do—then do the opposite.” EXACTLY! I was one to be constantly beating myself up over things, until I realized that those sudden memories of sin that come back at random times are from the enemy, trying to steal my joy. I learned to respond (out loud, if possible, so I hear myself saying it), “Yes, that was really bad – and Jesus forgave me of EVEN THAT! Isn’t He AMAZING!?” The enemy doesn’t try that on me much any more. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Such a good point, the enemy is very crafty about whispering thoughts of doubt in our ears. And too often we fall for it. But I love the way you battled back! That is a great idea! 😁

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: