The Radical Forgiveness of Jesus
Hello, my dear friends! As of late, I have been having flashbacks of my past. Moments that I would rather forget. Moments where I failed, and hurt people, and treated them harshly because it was all I ever knew. In those days all I knew was abuse, so I couldn't even comprehend relationships without pain. I've made some terrible mistakes in my past that have haunted me, and have driven me to become a better person that would never even think about doing those things again. I’ve changed myself completely, to the point where even I don't recognize myself anymore, but I still carried around the shame and the guilt from my past. The thought of me ever hurting anyone, ever, has crushed my soul; and I knew that I couldn't change the past, but I thought I couldn't allow myself to be free because of what I did. That I had to bear this shame and guilt of my actions so that it will never happen again. That I wasn't worthy of, or deserved Christ's forgiveness. It almost felt vaguely noble in a way. Like because of my past, this was my cross to bear. Because this was my way of sanctifying myself.
But as I had been praying to Jesus about my past and the feelings of shame and guilt that it gave me, He showed me that He wanted me to be free from even this. That He didn't want anyone to have shame and guilt in their lives, and that His grace extends to the ones who hurt others too. It's not solely for the victims, but it's for the victimizers as well. God's spirit can change everyone who calls out to Him. And all things can be made new.
I was already walking in the newness of correcting my past behavior, but I was still trapped in the oldness of my past mistakes' shame. Jesus came so He could bear the burden for ALL sin. And there is no sin greater than the next, nor is there any sin that God can't cover. God loves each and every one of us, and God forgives everyone who asks Him for forgiveness. God even forgives when others don't. And God forgets your past mistakes when others try to hold your past against you. The grace that God gives is a radical and unwavering grace. And His forgiveness is just the same. God loves us so much He doesn't want to see ANY of us trapped in bondage for ANY REASON. He is the breaker of chains and He will free you from this weight of shame if you will allow Him into that part of your heart.
You are enough. You are worthy of love. You are worthy of forgiveness. You are loved and you are forgiven. Your mistakes, no matter how big, do not define you, and they can't stop God's plan for your life. God is greater than any situation and every circumstance you could ever put yourself in. Release yourself from this shame. Release yourself from the past. You are worthy of a happy ending. You are worthy of a changed life. You are worthy of self-love. You are free to forgive yourself.
And to those who are worried about the ones you hurt, I want you to know and remember that God can reach out and mend hearts where you can't. He can make up the space where you can't reach, and will heal those who were hurt by your mistakes. You don't have to worry anymore. The same God that has forgiven you, has enough healing power to heal you and everyone else involved. The God that loves you, loves them too! And He will do everything in His power to heal them of any and every wound. So do not worry! God can handle it!
I used to beat myself up so much because I hated myself for ever hurting anyone. The thought of someone being in pain because of me shook me to my core. But I had a realization that no one leaves this life without hurting at least one person in some way. Nobody is perfect and everyone makes mistakes. And I used to think that I had to prove myself to show that I was a changed person to get people to believe that I was different. But I realize that I don't need to do that anymore. I know that I have changed, and I know I will never go back to my old ways, so I don't need to prove myself to anyone, including Jesus, because He already knows that I have changed for the better. So to anyone who has ever hurt anyone, and have started the steps to become a better person; I see you and I am here for you. And God is with you and will be with you for every step of the way! And He is so so proud of you!
9 "In the time of Noah I promised never again to flood the earth. Now I promise not to be angry with you again; I will not reprimand or punish you. 10 The mountains and hills may crumble, but my love for you will never end; I will keep forever my promise of peace." So says the Lord who loves you.
Isaiah 54:9-10 GNT
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,
Romans 8:1 NIV
It [Love] does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV
I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.
1 John 2:12 NIV
6 His choice is based on his grace, not on what they have done. For if God's choice were based on what people do, then his grace would not be real grace.
Romans 11:6 GNT