I know a girl.
A church girl.
She goes to services on Sunday. She reads God’s words of love every day. She prays radically for healing concerning others. She believes that God is who He says He is, and spreads the word.
But deep down, she doesn’t believe that the promises made, are for her.
Do you know someone like this lost little girl? They believe it all, lock stock and barrel…fully engaged in the truth, but just can’t accept that the forgiveness was meant for them. They know that God has forgiven them, but continually beat themselves up over the mistakes they have made.
The problem isn’t accepting the forgiveness of God, the trouble is an inability to forgive themselves that has them writhing in pain. But when we can’t forgive ourselves, are we saying to God “thanks, but no thanks!”? Paul tells us in acts 13:39 that ‘everyone who believes is set free from every sin’. Everyone; every sin. Does this mean that we should continually repent of the same sin over and over? No – God does not recognize sins He has already forgiven, He’s moved on. I picture Him sitting on His throne of glory, rolling His eyes and thinking: Again with the, ‘I’m sorry!’ Get over it already!
I’m absolutely sure that is not the case, but if I were God (and a very good thing that I am not) I would be a little put out. This is not to say that I haven’t struggled with forgiving myself. I have much to forgive, and even more to ask forgiveness for. Thoughts of my failures plague me; I struggle with it daily. But I also believe that Satan will use our weaknesses against us to keep us wallowing in our human struggles. The lies of the enemy sound a bit like this:
- I’m not good enough
- This is all I will ever have
- I don’t deserve the best
- My life will never change for the better
Sisters - loving ourselves is perhaps the hardest achievement we will ever undertake. Loving your family, your friends, even your enemies - easy in comparison. Treating yourself with loving kindness is a much more difficult proposition. Here are a few of my struggles:
- Looking in the mirror and accepting what you see in its entire God given glory –not easy.
- Cutting yourself some slack when you continually struggle with the same sin – not easy.
- Being content with what you have been given and genuinely happy in every situation – down-right difficult!
But this is what we are asked to do.
Give and accept grace.
And in our contentment, we will attain perfect peace. Try it sometime. Try being content instead of wanting something more. When you truly believe it; that you have it all - peace and joy will follow.
Living a faith that breathes the breath of authenticity and life, is a goal to which we should all aspire.
To believe what we know to be true…..and live as though we do.
This is a Faith that Breathes
Soli Deo Gloria!