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Forgiving Yourself

Updated on June 8, 2016

I never imagined I would… or I never intended to hurt them or I just wasn’t myself. You find that you have gone further down than you could have ever dreamed. The pain is unbearable. You’ve even asked for forgiveness and may have even received it from the one(s) you’ve wronged. But forgiving yourself, well that’s completely unattainable.

Forgiving yourself after failure, hurt and devastating choices can stop you in your tracks and even paralyze the life right out of you. Everyone does it at some point in their lives. You may think your situation is more devastating or life-altering or un-repairable than others… and in the natural daily experience you may be right.

But let me ask you one question. Did you stop breathing and the world stop rotating? No…?
Then you still have a chance…

Your view of the world may have changed and your life may have taken a hard left turn with tough consequences as a result of your choices but you’re still here and able to put one-thought-in-front-of-the-other . Ok, let me share some words of wisdom and encouragement that will get you on the path to hope… to healing.

No, there is no simple, quick-fix but as you take that first step, to acknowledge that there is a way, then hope begins, moment by moment... prayer by prayer... until you notice a glimmer of light slowly penetrating through at the end of the once suffocating tunnel that brightens as you move forward.

Hope Begins

No, there is no simple, quick-fix but as you take that first step, to acknowledge that there is a way, then hope begins, moment by moment... prayer by prayer... until you notice a glimmer of light slowly penetrating through at the end of the once suffocating tunnel that brightens as you move forward.


First, you must come face-to-face with your fear, your hurt, your pain. Acknowledge the reality of what has happened, whether you caused it or someone else may have hurt you or it may have even been caused by an unexpected accident.

Today we are driven by a “who’s at fault mentality”, people must have someone to blame. This can usually be the clincher, the one thing that causes you to falter. If you blame others, then you’ll need to deal with this and find a way to forgive them. No, it’s never easy but it can “always” be done. Sometimes swallowing your pride kills your tongue especially when you were honestly not at fault. But that doesn’t matter.

If there is no clear reason, such as natural disasters or unknown cause you are more likely to blame God. This is another issue to assess and I promise you won’t always find a pat answer that will point to His reasons or His thoughts. So, this might be the greatest challenges to hear and simply acknowledge. Sometimes He alone knows the reason but allows us to go through the pain in order that we may grow closer to Him and trust in his unconditional love and sovereignty (meaning we must trust that He is God and we are not but we trust Him completely in all things).

Owning It!

I think the toughest one to accept or face is the one facing you in the mirror. Are you so disappointed by your own choices that you have lost all respect and care for yourself? Are you left with no self-worth or desire to move forward? Do you find yourself always coming back to the same spot, “if only I hadn’t…”?

Well, you did! I did! I realize the choice(s) I’ve made have changed everything. Life will never be as I knew it or expected it would turn out.

Grieving is Natural

Now, realize, this is a death. And it’s ok to grieve. You’ve lost something extremely important, whether someone, your future, your family, your virginity, your hopes… this is still a death and in the most devastating way, because you may have caused it (or thought somehow you did).

But you can’t stay here. You can’t just stop here and give up. This is when we are eaten-up with guilt and gradually our lives are destroyed, and we begin to experience a slow, defeating, dark, death.

Now, I have some great news for you… there is hope.

But you must choose to move.

Taking the First Step

Take your first, most difficult step and “ask” for forgiveness from those you have wronged or hurt. Once you do this then you have successfully taken your first crucial step. It does not matter what their response may be. You are doing this to free yourself. So, the only one that chooses to forgive may be you. Jesus said if we can truly forgive, we will be forgiven. God forgives us completely of all sin (except blasphemy of the Holy Spirit) through His Son Jesus so we should be able to forgive.

God’s word says in Psalm 78:38: “Yet he was merciful; he forgave their iniquities and did not destroy them.”

What Now?

Next we need to cut off, stop or put aside the guilt and embarrassment that we have allowed to suffocate us. Guilt, prideful Sin, keeps us paralyzed and feeling as if we are forever stained, banished.

God wants to cover all of our sins and protects us from judgment. He has provided a covering (His Son Jesus) to cover the sin that separates us from him so that we are forgiven and the sin is taken away from us. We don’t have to live under the guilt any longer.

Walk in the forgiveness of God so that we are free from guilt and shame. “If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?”

I think the hardest part of all was forgiving me, forgiving myself. God says he forgets our sins and He’s given us the right to do the same because of his Son, Jesus. In Jeremiah 31:34b God promises, "For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more." So if He pardons you then you must also pardon yourself. This does not mean you are not guilty. It means you have been given a pardon (released); it sets you free, FORGIVEN.

“So far is the east is from the west, he has cast our sins.”

Continuing to dwell on your failure and pain is just as bad as committing the act over and over because it keeps the focus on the sin. So, don’t glorify and build up your failures to make your story so grand either. The fact that you and I have been given grace is what is so magnificent about God’s unconditional love. We have no room to be puffed up or proud (which is a great sin against God).

At His Feet

True Forgiveness

I must admit, without a relationship with someone, how can you trust them and want to befriend them? That’s why I believe many find it hard to trust God, when they really don’t know Him that well. And that’s why it’s critical that you seek a personal relationship with the One who loves you enough to take away your and my sins by sacrificing His only Son. You must believe and acknowledge your acceptance that not only did Jesus die for our sins but that He rose from the dead and now dwells in your heart.

Now you will know and thrive in an unexplainable peace and treasure of forgiveness with the promise of eternal life with God.

That’s True Forgiveness!


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    • Psalmist4M profile image

      Psalmist4M 7 years ago from the Shelter of His Wings

      Thank you for the comment and support. Have a blessed Sunday evening.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 7 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Thanks for taking on a difficult subject, especially while one is in it. Good practical stuff!

    • cristina327 profile image

      Maria Cristina Aquino Santander 7 years ago from Manila

      Great hub with great insights to ponder. This hub presents timely truths that are so relevant in christian living. Truly to receive the forgiveness of God is one the excellent realities of being a christian.Receiving God's forgiveness is one of the greatest blessings christianity bestow to a believer. Thank you for sharing these precious truths her at Hubpages. Blessings to you.

    • profile image

      Vannessa 7 years ago

      I enjoyed this article. You make perfect since. We make it so hard to forgive, maybe because we let it build up over time. For some of us its not easy to let go. Its so so deep. But with God, intsead of time, He can bring people in our lives like you, who can help us understand how to release forgiveness.

    • 2besure profile image

      Pamela Lipscomb 7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      Some things are hard to forgive. Thing you wish you could do over. Through God's grace we are forgiven and if He forgives us we are able to forgive ourselves.

    • profile image

      jasper420 7 years ago

      very true love this hub