I Forgive You... I Mean Me
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I Forgive You... I Mean Me

The devil knows your name but calls you by your sin. God knows your sin but calls you by your name

I Forgive You... I Mean Me

Last week, I wrote on forgiving others, and while that part is crucial to a healing process -- but the hardest part? Forgiving yourself. We dwell on the situation that happened, how we could’ve prevented it, how we could’ve changed the outcome and how things up to this point could be different. We pick ourselves apart and guilt and regret fill our thoughts right before we fall asleep, we magnify the flaws we carry that maybe encouraged this outcome; before we even realize it, we are being submerged in a place that can so easily turn to anger and insecurity. I often wish I could turn back time and fix, redo or remake some instances, but the fact of the matter is time has a way of healing all wounds. What I lost sleep over a year ago is not even a concern to me now. Does that mean I am at complete peace, and I hold no record of wrong in man’s eyes? Of course not. It means I have chosen to forgive myself of what has already been forgiven.

You see, to be like Christ is not to merely study His words and pray in His name, but walk in His words and abide in His name. I personally, struggle deeply with mistakes I’ve made that very well could have been prevented and saved me and others a lot of hurt, and I have tossed and turned with myself often thinking of what I should and shouldn’t have done. I became angry that I let certain things happen and certain people change my heart. In direct response I have allowed myself to become insecure because I stepped around situations quietly in fear I would disappoint others or worse myself again. We are truly are own worst critics, and with that comes a difficulty in forgiving ourselves because we tend to beat ourselves up for things that have been permanently stored in the back of our minds, but are no longer a true issue. Just because you made the mistake doesn’t mean you must cling to it or become defined by it. The devil knows your name but calls you by your sin. God knows your sin but calls you by your name.

How do you get to a place where you understand you are human and are capable of making and doing wrong? How to you grasp ahold to the fact you cannot change anything from your past, and you must move forward? How do you accept you are NOT a perfect christian? How do you avoid thoughts from previous events control you? How do you truly learn to forgive yourself when you have to deal with yourself every single day?

Self-compassion and empathy.

You must learn to view yourself from the outside, and realize just because you are christian doesn’t make you a perfect super human. Consider how you have forgiving to others or how Christ has forgiven you. You are worth that same love and respect you give, and remind yourself that you give God countless reasons to shun you from His kingdom yet He still calls you His beloved.

View this process as self- growth.

Every Christian goes through periods where they must level up and mature, and this isn’t a “you’re a bad person card” from God, but simply a chance for you to grow in Him and therefore allow Him to expand you in many ways. We must take these opportunities serious and allow them to truly fertilize us spiritually because if we never grow in Christ we will miss all the great things He is preparing us for entirely.

Let go of pain and guilt.

Easier said than done, right? Guilt is to the spirit what pain is to the body. It’s weakening, strenuous and deadly. Once guilt creeps into the pockets of your spirit it will grow into resentment. Christ has forgiven you and taken the sin as far as east is from the west, and we must take comfort in that.

Redirection of your thoughts is probably the most difficult part.

For me they like to come at the worst times! Like when I am finally confident in myself or when I am trying to focus on something else. That’s how you know it is the devil, because when you are confidently walking with Christ, he likes to approach the mind and try to convince you of your worthlessness from your mistakes or the view of yourself from man’s perspective. When these thoughts begin to arouse I quickly begin praying God will redirect my thoughts, allow me to stay focused on Him and remind me my worth is not found in my mistakes, but in He who thought I was worth more than rubies.

Speak kindness and positivity.

it is more than OK to love yourself! Christians are trained to become selfless and restrain from self-adoring thoughts, which is correct, but that doesn’t mean destroy yourself inside and never think great of yourself to remain humble. I specifically struggle with this part the most.

My words and thoughts towards myself are, more often than not, as high as they should be. This doesn’t mean get cocky and talk about yourself nonstop. This is a personal conversation that should be held. Speak kind to yourself because in today’s world -- who else will? Be your own biggest fan and let your accomplishments and moments of triumphs speak for themselves. Adore yourself quietly and tell yourself despite what the devil or anyone around you might say you are valuable, loved, treasured, admired, wanted and hold a great amount of purpose in the kingdom of God.

Cultivate kindness within your own heart, and it will expel into anyone you encounter. Tell yourself positive things about yourself and know that no matter what God still thinks positive about you. You are funny, spirited, capable, honored, smart, hardworking and worthy. It is OK to praise yourself and give yourself credit, but remember it is He who gives us strength. Tell yourself the past is the past, and the future holds potential and an abundance of blessings.

Walk securely forward and rest in the amazing grace that has saved, redeemed and restored joy in our hearts.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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