Have you ever sat quietly on your own and felt overwhelming guilt and anxiety about past mistakes? I have! I used to sit and think about some of the foolish things I have done and I would feel awful. I knew that Jesus had forgiven me, but I sometimes found it difficult to forgive myself of past mistakes and failures. So how do we move from guilt to freedom?
1. Acknowledge our humanity: We are human and human beings are prone to fail. You are not perfect and you have made mistakes in your life. The chief thing is to acknowledge your faults and failures.
2. Ask God for His pardon: We need to seek forgiveness from the Lord. However, most of us have already taken that step and still we struggle to move past our failures.
3. Ask for forgiveness from the person you offended: It is important to ask the person or the people that you have offended to forgive you. That is an important step in finding absolute freedom.
4. Forgive yourself: You have to learn to forgive yourself.
5. Move forward: Don’t sit chiding yourself – that is not helpful. Once you have asked forgiveness you do need to move on. Guilt is not a helpful emotion. In fact, guilt is one of the tools the Enemy will use against you. God does not place guilt on us. If we have sinned God convicts us of our sin and once we have responded to His conviction we move forward.
6. Remind yourself of God’s grace and love: I love the story of the Woman caught in adultery in John chapter 8. Jesus asked her where her accusers were. She replied, “They have gone.” In a remarkable and sweeping show of grace and pardon Jesus says, “Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.” Jesus offers her complete and absolute pardon. She leaves Jesus and goes to live out a new life. You will have freedom when you forgive yourself. Or, you will find complete freedom as you move from the life you once lived to the new and exciting life you can have as a Christ follower.
My friend, as you begin this new day remind yourself that you are forgiven. Jesus has forgiven you and you must now learn to walk in that forgiveness. Jesus loves you and He wants you to know and experience His freedom. I trust that you will walk in His freedom today. Have a blessed day!
I am and always will be,
Recklessly abandoned, ruthlessly committed and in relentless pursuit of Jesus,