Forget the Past
Do you ever feel like you are not worthy of God’s love because of your mistakes? Do you feel like your sins are unforgivable? That is how I felt for many years—shame became part of my life when I came back to God. You see, I grew up in church and knew about God’s love, but the moment I got a taste of independence, I turned my back on him.
Later, in my emptiness, I returned to God, and he accepted me with open arms. Remember the story of the prodigal son? Well, in this case, I was the prodigal daughter, returning to the arms of my loving father. He forgave me and accepted me into his presence, but I could not get over my past sins. I would walk into church and felt like others could read me. Shame kept me from growing in God’s love.
How many Christians go through the same crushing experience when they return to God after being away from church and from God’s presence? They feel that they are not worthy of God’s love because of their past mistakes, in spite of the fact that they know the Bible tells us over and over again that through Christ our past is forgotten and everything is new. Surely it is one thing to know, but another thing to understand it and live by it.
One day, as I was reading the Bible, I came across a verse that was telling me to forget the past, to never think about it again, and to trust God—for he was creating something new. God was telling me to focus on the new. I felt as if I could hear God whispering in my ear, “I threw your sins in the sea of forgetfulness, but you keep bringing them back.”
When I accepted God’s forgiveness, I was instantly liberated from my shame! Whenever those shameful feelings crept up again, I reminded myself to forget the past and focus on the future. Eventually, they disappeared and I could finally begin my journey—growing in God’s love and forgiving myself.
If you find yourself struggling with your past, and you feel that there are sins from the past that are unforgivable, please remember that God has forgiven you. Now it is your turn to receive God’s forgiveness; it is your turn to forgive yourself. Remind yourself of who you are in Christ. Insert your name in the blank and read it aloud:
_________________________, who belongs to Christ, is a new person.
_________________________ ‘s past is forgotten, and everything is new.
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