Thursday, Apr 9, 2020

Forgive Yourself and Move Forward

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Alecia M. White
Alecia M. Whitehttps://www.aleciathewriter.com/
Author, blogger, lover of coffee, and all things Jesus. By profession, Alecia is a teacher and administrator. She recently published her first book "The Thing Is...", a poignant look at suffering and endurance. She is privileged to share her love for Christ through her writing.

I Forgive Me.

One day, a few weeks ago, I hit the snooze button at 6:00 a.m.

Now, the problem with that is, it’s my prayer time. I was tired. I’d stayed up way past my bedtime the night before, and decided that I’d push that amazing button just once.

Well, I must’ve just turned the entire alarm off because I didn’t hear it go off again. My 8:00 a.m. alarm went off and I sat up in a panic. I could hear God say, “You missed it, but I’ll give you a chance to come before me again.”

snooze buttonI felt terrible! As I got out of bed to pray, I remember apologizing profusely for not getting up like I know He instructed me to do. After my prayer time, I felt better, much better.

But then, there was that voice in the back of my mind saying, “You failed, you should’ve gotten up. You messed up!” I apologized to God again for my disobedience and He reassured me that He’d redeemed all the time that I’d miss with those two hours of sleep.

Although God forgave me, it took me another hour or so to “get my life.”

You see, I’m a lot harder on myself than anyone else could ever be. I’m the child that rarely got spanked or punished, not because I didn’t do wrong at times, but because by the time my parents got to me, I’d already been punished and grounded for life – by “me.”

Take Advantage of New Mercies

wait on GodThis caused me to think back on other times when I’d done wrong and God forgave me. I thought about how I would continue to feel bad and apologize even after He’d righted those wrongs. I realized that often times, it’s not unforgiveness on God’s part that holds me back, but me not forgiving myself.

See, as children of God, we are granted new mercies each day. “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness (Lamentations 3:22-23)”. Those mercies cover us so that when we repent, we don’t have to wallow in what we’ve done – we get to move forward.

In the past, I have been known to be my own worst enemy, in that, I kept myself bound by things that I had been pardoned from. Not just with God, but with friends and family as well.

God showed me that I needed to learn to accept forgiveness so that I could actually grow from my mistakes. There have been times when I would sit and think back on stupid things I’d done and begin to feel bad all over again. That was very unhealthy and something that God had to deliver me from.

SO, WHAT’S THE PLAY CALL?

Forgive yourself! If we are so busy focusing on where we’ve messed up, we can’t possibly think about the solution. Allow yourself room to grow.

Here are a few lessons that I had to learn in order to move on after being forgiven:

Accept forgiveness.

If you’re anything like I was, you take it really hard when you’ve done wrong. Not because you’re beyond being wrong, but the thought or feeling of letting yourself or others down is a hard pill to swallow. But remember, we are human, we make mistakes, and God forgives us. “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;” Ephesians 1:7

Let go of the mistake.

Yes, learn from what you’ve done, but don’t allow it to overshadow your momentum. You must learn to let go in order to grow. Our PlayBook says in Ezekiel 18:22 (NLT), “All their past sins will be forgotten, and they will live because of the righteous things they have done.”

Believe God.

If He says that you are forgiven, then you must believe that you are. God doesn’t lie. “Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people, thou hast covered all their sin. Selah.” Psalms 85:2

Forgive yourself!

Nobody can do it for you, it is a decision that you alone must make. Just as forgiving others frees you, forgiving yourself frees you even more. You cannot properly honor God’s Word and love yourself if you are holding grudges against yourself. In Matthew 22:39, our PlayBook says, “And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”

 

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