It’s Time To Forgive Yourself Because God Already Has

Ben Waardenburg

Maybe sometimes we’re harder on ourselves than God himself is.

And at times, we look at ourselves, and we condemn ourselves for our faults and our pasts. We see all of the times we weren’t enough and we believe God is quick to judge and even quicker to abandon and unlove us. We see disappointment and we believe that His grace isn’t stretched far enough to reach us.

And maybe that’s because we base our relationship with God on the works of our hands, on the moments we think we’re perfect and holy, on the number of laws we abide, on the way we dress, on how much skin we hide, on the relationships we don’t build with people outside of our belief. We base it on how high we raise our hands and how poised we sing every song during worship, we base it on the wealth and properties we accumulated in order to call ourselves blessed.

See, this is the exact reason why at the very moment we fall short from all of these things, we find it absolutely hard to forgive ourselves.

We allow ourselves to be defined by all of these. We become too consumed of these things that we actually believe that our relationship with God is ultimately based on these things. That this is what it takes feel accepted, to be saved. And that’s exactly how we belittle the vastness of the glory of God. Our relationship with God is never based on these tangible things. We just made it that way.

Truth is, God sees us differently.

When He looks at us, He sees love. He sees His children, coming to Him, trying and overcoming no matter how hard the circumstances are, no matter how difficult and challenging life may get. When He looks at us, He sees the struggle but He sees our faith even more. He sees how much hope we have over our strife and He honors that, because He is a faithful God. And no matter how small our faith is, it matters to Him.

Our heart matters the most to Him.

When He looks at us, all He feels is compassion, over our faults, our shame and sin and shortcomings. His heart showers overwhelming forgiveness. And when we feel the dirtiest, He is holding us all the more. I believe that. He is a God whose love and grace is unconditional and forever. And He doesn’t identify us in physical things, not in wealth or in relationships, not in labels or in good works – He identifies us in Him alone. Our worth is found only in Him. And this is the real foundation of our relationship with Him.

If the God – who holds the entire universe in His hands, who sent His salvation for us – sees us with so much gentleness and unwavering adoration in His eyes, maybe it’s time to forgive ourselves. Look at ourselves with a little less cruelty and more kindness. Maybe it’s time to look at ourselves and our walk with God as a work in progress, that everyday, we may fail, but we are trying. With hearts set steadfast in Him, grasping His hope.

Maybe it’s time to look at ourselves like how God looks at us.

That we are wonderfully made, that we are enough, regardless of who we are, how we preach, how high we raise our hands, who we build relationships with. Regardless. He looks directly in our hearts, in its intentions and motives.

Because at the end of the day, it’s true, God sees us differently. And how He sees us – should radiate in everything we do, in how we love people, how we treat people, how we live. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Dian is the author of Catastrophes, a prose and poetry collection exploring living and loving, breaking and mending, falling and rising, losing and surviving. Get in touch with her on Instagram and Twitter.

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