Monday, October 22, 2012

How Can I Forgive Myself?

This week at Almond Union of Churches, we continued our series on Forgiveness:  The real F word.  While last week we looked at how to make sure we were forgiven by God in  a message titled Finding Forgiveness, this week we look at how to forgive ourselves, in a message titled, How Can I Forgive Myself.

I identified three steps I must carry out to be able to truly forgive myself.  Last week we looked in depth at the first.  This week we summarized that message by going over the three steps again:  We must 1) recognize our need for God, 2) return to God, 3) receive forgiveness through Jesus and what He did on the cross.  but possibly the most important part of that message was that forgiveness is available to everyone who will turn to God and earnestly seek it.  The first step in my being able to forgive myself, is to come to God seeking forgiveness from Him, and knowing for sure that I have been forgiven.  Forgiveness by God enables me to forgive myself.  I can't possibly forgive myself if God hasn't first forgiven me.

The second step in my forgiving myself is to change my behavior.  We call this repentance.  I will never be able to forgive myself for something if I'm still doing it.  If I'm feeling grief and shame and despair, and I desperately want to be able to forgive myself for this, I've got to stop doing it.  I've got to turn away from the wrong behavior that caused these feelings of regret, and I've got to turn to God and make sure I get right with God again.

The third and final step in being able to forgive myself is to create a new future for myself.  Many people who experience the pain and regret and despair from sin fail here.  They are tempted to withdraw and isolate themselves and continue on in the pain they feel.  In order for us to get past it, we've got to truly start again, to step out in faith in the path God has for us.

If you would like to read the entire message, click on the title below.  You will also find an audio link if you would rather listen to it.

Forgiveness:  How Can Forgive Myself?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for delving into a sometimes tough topic!!! I have thoroughly enjoying taking a fresh look at the stories of the Prodigal son and the disciple Peter. One can tell that you have put a tremendous amount of time and energy into prepping for these profound messages. The skits by Stewart, Joy and Sarah have been amazing!!! Keep up the good work. Looking forward to the rest of the series ...

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