I am not proud of everything in my past. There was a time in my life (after I became a believer) that I was not walking with the Lord. I did many sinful things and honestly, I made myself feel better about it by turning off a little button inside of me called 'conviction'. I always KNEW it was sin and KNEW I shouldn't be doing it, but I still did because it was the easier way out. It was "fun".
Years later, after a lot of heartache and pain, I decided to turn my heart back to Christ and change the way I was living. I was dealing with some painful consequences and finally realized how unfulfilling my actions and some friendships were during that time. I can't say I was perfect. I most definitely went back to my old ways after deciding to change but over time, the length between those moments were longer and longer until I really had changed completely.
God and I talked often about this change and I knew without a doubt that He had forgiven me and that those who love me also forgave me.
Here was my problem...I could not forgive myself. I was so mad at myself and felt so unworthy and ashamed. No one around me projected this onto me. I truly just put it on myself...well, I'm sure that Satan had a hand in it...telling me little lies about how dirty and unclean I was.
The whole time, God was telling me to let go of it and forgive myself because He had and honestly, HIS love and forgiveness is all that matters. When the Bible says that He "forgives us our sins", it means that you are wiped completely clean (Acts 3:19). You are washed whiter than snow (Psalm 51:7). You are a new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).
I carried around this baggage for years. It crippled me from believing in myself and my future.
I'm not sure what did it, but it finally clicked...I was finally able to forgive myself because my worth is in Christ alone. I finally saw myself as worthy because of what Christ did for me on the Cross, not because of anything I had done or said.
People could tell that I was more confident. I was able to accept love because I love myself. I know I am nothing without Christ, but with Him, I am beautiful, I am worthy, I am His perfect creation.
At times, Satan still tries to remind me of my faults in the past, but I feel stronger now...strong enough to stand up and say "I am His, therefore, this no longer has a hold on me. I have been freed from the power of sin and now live with no condemnation."
I'm linking up with Cassie at Sage the Blog and Cassie at Living on Cloud Nine for In The Word Tuesday!