Sometimes in the middle of the night I replay the past, replay the shame, replay the ‘I wish I wouldn’t have done that, I regret that, I’m so stupid, I could have done better’s,’ and I toss and turn, and ask God, how can you forgive me AGAIN? I messed up again, I’ve asked forgiveness for this issue so many times, aren’t you tired of me messing up over and over and over again? I get sick of me, so how does God not get sick of me and my mistakes? I was sharing these thoughts with my therapist today and how I struggle with feeling worthy of forgiveness sometimes. She asked me, “Mandy, what voice, whose voice, are you choosing to listen to? The voice of a liar, or the voice of truth?” So I went to the source of truth; the Bible, the Word of God. Here’s what I was reminded of today:
- God is unchanging in who He is: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” –Hebrews 13:8
- God’s love never changes. God doesn’t love us all the same, because we each understand love differently, but He loves us all equally. The entire Psalm 136 repeats this sentence 26 times, “God’s love never fails.” Never.
- God’s promises and plans never change. “Hey there! All who are thirsty, come to the water. Are you penniless? Come anyway—buy and eat! Come, buy your drinks, buy wine and milk. Buy without money—everything’s free! Why do you spend your money on junk food, your hard-earned cash on cotton candy?
Listen to me, listen well: Eat only the best, fill yourself with only the finest. Pay attention, come close now, listen carefully to my life-giving, life-nourishing words. I’m making a lasting covenant commitment with you, the same that I made with David: sure, solid, enduring love.”—Isaiah 55:1-4 MSG
- God never leaves us. Isaiah 40:8 tells us that “the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.”
We have a choice. We can listen to the lies, or we can listen to the truth. We can live from a place of grateful expectation, or we can live from a place fixed on our past and our limitations. I’m reminded of the story of the invalid man in John chapter 5. There was a pool outside of a city gate where the handicapped and sick gathered because of its reputed healing properties. There was one man there that had been an invalid for 38 years. When Jesus saw him, he asked the man, “Do you want to get well?” The man replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.” Oh my goodness girlfriends, this is a big “YEAH, BUT!”
Jesus offers us healing. He offers us forgiveness; over and over again. He offers us love. He promises salvation when we choose Him. Friends, let’s listen to the truth. Let’s stop listening to the lies, and all the reasons why we can’t be forgiven, accepted, and loved. Throw out your “Yeah, buts:”
I had a bad childhood
I have no skills
I don’t have enough education
I don’t know where to start
I’ve been abused
I keep messing up
I can’t stand the holiday season
That’s why God sent us His son! For us. This is why we celebrate the Christmas season. Jesus was born to save us; our Savior! Thank you Lord, because I need saving.
Every. Single. Day.