Jesus forgave you, why haven’t you forgiven yourself? Jesus deemed you as worthy, why have you demoted yourself to unworthy? Woman, what are you hanging over your own head or dragging around as a dead weight behind you? Why is that thing in your past being brought into your today? It’s time to let it go. (Come on Elsa, help me out with this one, “let it go, let it go ….”)

Why are you still punishing yourself for that thing in your past? You may think it’s humble to play little under this offense of yours, you may even think it is necessary to honor the severity of your offense, but let me be real clear what it really is, it is dangerous disobedience. Yes, dangerous disobedience. This unforgiveness and continued punishment against yourself is a disobedience to God’s word, and it is dangerous in your life.

Jesus said in Mark 11:25 “And when you are praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

Well have you ever thought about all you hold against YOU? What is this unforgiveness of yourself doing in your life? Is it blocking God’s forgiveness from getting to you? Absolutely not. But let me assure you, your unwillingness to forgive yourself is blocking the full redeeming power of God’s forgiveness.

God’s forgiveness can do miraculous work in an ordinary person’s life, but if that person can’t forgive themselves, then they continue to live in the condemnation Jesus already died to clear. Girl, you have absolutely NO RIGHT to be dragging this around with you still. You have no right to look at yourself in the mirror and only see that past sin and continue to punish yourself for it. Jesus is saying to you “my daughter, I have forgiven you, you MUST forgive yourself.”

I know of a woman who made a mistake in her past. I know, I know, you’re pulling back thinking “wait, she’s talking about me now.” Yes, isn’t that because we’re all women who made mistakes in their past? You’re not alone in this sister. It’s ridiculous to think you are. But this woman knows and love Jesus. She has received the forgiveness of Jesus over and over again, and she doesn’t doubt that. However, after all these years, she just can’t forgive herself. So she punishes herself. It’s self-sabotage at it’s finest.

And sadly, she’s made peace with her self-sabotage. She’s reasoned it out in her head and told herself she’s not deserving of better, she’s not trustworty to handle better, so she continues the punishment for a sin that was forgiven the moment she asked for it. The result is, a life short of the goodness God has planned for her. And it’s eating her up. She doesn’t love who she is, or how she’s living.

She’s doing this to herself. It’s her long-term punishment for a sin she’s unwilling to fully forgive herself of. It’s maybe why she overeats. It’s maybe why she makes promises to herself and breaks them. It’s maybe why she willfully chooses again and again to let herself down, and dig this ditch deeper where she has been stuck for so many years. She cheats on herself because she feels like that’s what she deserves for what she did in the past. And if she keeps herself in this ditch, she won’t hurt others again. She created this mess, so she feels it’s her mess to dwell in. But where does that stop?

Let me tell you, it stopped with JESUS!

This woman I know, a woman a whole lot like you and I, SHE IS HOLDING HER PAST SIN AGAINST HERSELF. And when she won’t forgive, she blocks the full power of Jesus’ forgiveness and redemption. He wants to strengthen her to NEVER ever make that past mistake again. To never feel those feelings again. To never return to that darkness. To never walk that path again. That’s His plan. He wants to use her pain for a purpose. He wants to redeem that mistake and make it a message. But she isn’t walking fully in that redemption because she’s still holding it against herself.

Dangerous disobedience. You think the enemy doesn’t play in that ditch you’ve dug for yourself? You think he doesn’t delight in you settling here in this life of self-punishment you’ve created for yourself? Every time you pick at yourself and dig up your past for punishment, the devil adds a point on his scoreboard. He might not win your soul, but he will win your imprisonment. He will celebrate as you continue to be held back in something you did, but Jesus already fully paid the price for.

Am I telling your story?

Are you a woman who has freedom before her, but a past behind her, and you can’t step into the fullness of the future because you’re still playing with regret of the past? You’re still holding that crap against yourself?!!!! You may think it’s reasonable, you may think it’s justified, and you may think it makes perfect sense, but let me tell you something, it is absolutely RIDICULOUS.

It’s ridiculous for a saved, rescued, redeemed girl like you to think she’s justified in holding anything against herself. You don’t have that right any longer. Stop it. Stop blocking the full intent of Jesus’ sacrifice. Stop getting in the way of God’s power over this situation.

What are you holding against yourself?
What burden are you carrying with weighted heaviness, causing you to live a life of self-punishment?

Could this be the very thing holding you back? Could this be what has kept you from living up to your true potential? Could this be why you haven’t stepped into the BIG Life you were created for? Why you still feel that way? Why you still struggle? Why you still hurt? Because you haven’t forgiven yourself for that failure.

And so, you punish yourself.

As a result, your life suffers.

Now maybe you’re okay with your life suffering because you feel like your life should suffer, but are you okay with the suffering you’re causing others?

Understand, as a Mom, you’ve been teaching your children to do exactly as you do.
As a wife, you live guarded with your husband and hold a bit of bitterness within which he is not responsible for. You have a hole he can’t fill, so he carries a feeling of inadequacy.

Are you okay with this? Are you okay with your self-created punishment flowing over onto those closest to you? Maybe you feel like you deserve the punishment, but do they?

Forgive yourself of every failure. Your future depends on it. Your family desperately needs it.

You can’t carry around the bitterness of unforgiveness against anyone, especially yourself. Jesus warned you against this. He warned you of the damage this would do. He warned you of the danger.

That self-sabotage, girl it’s GOT TO GO. That self-hatred, you have no right to be hating on God’s finest creation. Jesus declared you as worthy of full forgiveness. He deemed you as worthy of nothing short of the good plans God has always had for you. You haven’t been dismissed from that goodness, so stop dismissing yourself.

That’s enough! Forgive YOU. Stop using this against yourself to stop short of the potential God has placed within you. You have no idea the power of God’s forgiveness until you get out of the way of his redemption!

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