Sometimes I think we forget that it’s no less than a Triangular Affair when it comes to forgiveness.
What I mean by that is besides the other person we are facing off with, there is also the other party we almost always continue to contend with long after the matter is said and done. That hidden inner person we call self.
Have you ever found it nearly impossible to forgive yourself of things you have done? You’ve cried your eyes swollen, drenched pillows and filled wastebaskets with boxes of tissues. And with all that there have also been the sleepless nights of wrestling with thoughts that simply will not go to bed. The endless mental discussions with yourself that replay the regretful events with such clarity and the words — those words — that had the power to shut down relationships in an instant.
After days and hours, possibly weeks, months and years — of in-person, on the phone, in text, notecards, ecards — of expressing our remorse and admitting of whatever fault we own up to, and the other person has forgiven us of any offenses on our part … we still carry the burden of shame and guilt for what we have done.
I am no stranger to this self-inflicted pain. In fact, I liken it to wearing shame like a scarf around my neck — closest to my head where the enemy of my soul tries to invade my mind with distracting and destructive thoughts. Let’s face it, Sister, that’s where this wrestling match originates.
Our key Scripture verse taken from the Book of John the eighth chapter describes an event where Jesus specifically tells a woman that her accusers had abandoned their motion to punish her for her sin. In fact, Jesus, says that even He did not condemn her. So why do we continue in the vicious cycle of shaming ourselves?
When we continue to dwell on a situation or event, we invite the danger to remain stuck in that situation or event. Jesus told the accused woman, “Go and sin no more.” And He was done with it. He didn’t tell her His forgiveness was contingent on her fulfilling any special acts. He just told her to “go.”
Sister, take that from your Savior. Go on with your life. Go on and seek help. Go forward and live.
You may be thinking, “But that doesn’t add up to three people.” Let’s visit the equation once again …
There’s you, there’s the person with whom you are engaging and there’s GOD. Oh, ooops, did we leave Him out of the original headcount?
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9 ESV
Sweet Friend, He came to set us free. That freedom is available for the asking and the taking. No strings attached. Flat out free. Jesus paid the price and that’s why it’s free. He stands handing it out to anyone who will take it and live.
So if the Son has set us free from our entangled messes — not that we won’t have to deal with the consequences, we will — but we must leave the judgement to Him. To condemn ourselves is to negate the love of GOD towards us through the sacrifice of Jesus.
Your mind should not house counterproductive thoughts, nor is it a place to harbor anger, bitterness, jealousy, envy … it’s much to precious!
We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take away every thought captive to obey Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV
This is the first step in the right direction on the journey to self-forgiveness. We must lasso those thoughts and take them down. If our GOD says He has forgiven us, it is finished.
- Are you plagued with thoughts of guilt and shame over things in the past?
- Reach out to a Believing Friend and pray about it.
- Journal your thoughts so that you have a place to put them.
Take it all to the GOD Who loves you more than you’ll ever imagine.
I love you to Heaven and Back, Girlfriend ~~
LindaRJohnson, TitusTwo Visionary