Friday, March 11, 2011

Forgiving Myself


"When you forgive, you're not doing God a favor, you are giving yourself the gift of freedom." Joyce Meyer

I'm not sure why it was so hard....why I struggled so much to forgive myself.  It was easier to forgive my parents who hurt me....and the rapist who held me and wouldn't let me go....then it was to forgive myself.

Maybe it was the lies I had been told that felt so much like truth.  Bad....worthless....garbage. I know now....they were what kept me stuck in a cycle of pain, shame and fear. 

Forgiveness -  I believed I deserved to be punished for what happened - I believed it was my fault....I was to blame. Letting myself off the hook didn't come easy. 

We rented an older movie...The Mission. In it a mercenary accidentally killed his brother. His guilt wouldn't let him forgive himself...even when the priest came...told him he was forgiven...he still couldn't accept it. 

He tied a heavy sack on his back...a form of punishment and carried it everywhere he went. He was able to finally let it go when the people's love who he had previously hunted broke through his shame and guilt. Their love and acceptance gave him what he needed to forgive himself and let go of that 'burden' on his back.  

Forgiveness: 
-it's what helped release me from the darkness that consumed my life.
-it was an act of kindness towards myself. 
-it's was a process not a one-shot deal.
-I needed to say the words out loud....to actually hear them. 
-to let go of self-hate and anger I needed to forgive myself.

Forgiving myself was like turning a light on in the dark...it was the key that turned the lock.....and brought a freedom I hadn't known before.  I had held myself to an impossible standard...Forgiveness helped me realize I was just human and doing the best I could...Forgiveness....a true gift of freedom.

30 comments:

Dulce said...

Forgiving others is great... but forgiving ourselves is no wonder the highest leberation... lovely post.

I love to see how you progress into the lightest form of life, sister!

:)

Love always

NOS said...

I agree with you that forgiving ourselves is one of the hardest and most important things to do. But I also think we must remember that a lot of things we want to forgive ourselves for were never our fault in the first place. For example, I still haven't forgiven myself for missing my sister's uni graduation because I was in treatment, but when I really look at it I realize that I was not really in control-- I didn't have a choice because my eating disorder had taken it away from me.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that forgiveness is importance, but so is realizing that we are not to blame.

Wishing you well,
NOS

CRY said...

Keep that light on and make it bright so I can see it!
DO NOT turn it off!
if you have to find another swich do so and turn it on with the other and do not let that darkness in! I have just turned on a switch with a bright light on it for you in my heart, its not going off either!

Wendy Paine Miller said...

I'm so glad you are resting in that true gift of freedom--that truly what forgiving yourself feels like.
~ Wendy

Wanda's Wings said...

I so agree that forgiving oneself is the hardest thing to do. You are well on your journey. God bless you!

Mary said...

beautiful freedom...

love, grace and peace to you.

valerie said...

Hello my sweet Sarah, I am so glad that day be day you are still making it through life with the help of the Lord. You are so much stronger than you think and it is because of your faith in the Lord. He gives us the strength to make it through each and everday. Little by little you are being set free through His grace and mercy my sweet Sarah. Blessings, hugs and love to you.

Crown of Beauty said...

Such a deep post, written from the heart of one who knows what she's talking about. It is only one who has been forgiven much that can also forgive much, including oneself. And yet the forgiveness Christ offers has to be received before it can activate the power of being forgiven. It sounds tricky, but is actually easy. All one has to do is to receive what Christ has done. I am amazed at how much work GOd has done in you, and through you... and yet there is still much to be done. In you, in me, in all of us.

Forgiveness is the key. Sometimes I realize I have to forgive myself, or another person several times. The hurt and the pain and the anger can be removed layer by layer. Each time we choose to forgive, another layer is taken off.

I love your honesty and openness.

Love
Lidj

MTJ said...

Hi Sarah,

There is liberation in the experience of forgiveness. It is something to be treasured. I'm thankful that you found that place, and you bask in the joy of knowing you're free from the bondage that haunted you.

Blessings and peace.

MTJ

Chatty Crone said...

A lot to think about here - I never thought it was like carrying a heavy back pack on your back - I think how heavy that would be to do that all the time.

I'm glad you were able to forgive yourself.

Love, sandie

Patrina's Pencil said...

Oh, Sarah, I loved that movie so much that I had to buy the DVD so I could watch it over and over. I just watched it this winter for the first time. I was always going to do a post about it's powerful message - but never did. That scene carrying his bag of armor - was one of the most powerful moments - I cried! It fueled my passion for my Lord. Powerful indeed is this FORGIVENESS - freely offered - freely given.

Bless you sweet soul for sharing your LIGHT to the nations.

Loved your song playing in the background. He WILL Carry YOU!

Praying for you tonight -
and all weekend.
Hope you have a blessed one.
Patrina <")>><

Morela said...

Wow, I love this post. I can't wait to read more of your blog.

From Tracie said...

This is such a great explanation of what forgiveness is all about and why it is so important.

Shanae Branham said...

Wow! You are so brave. I am touched by your honesty. It is inspiring and forgiveness of self is such an important message. I have started a blog devoted to highlight people who have turned hardship into blessings. I see your strength to forgive as a message of triumph. I think this post would be perfect for my contest. Take a look. www.triumphandtears.com

Mya said...

I wish victims of abuse did not suffer from this, because they did nothing. They are innocent. It is such a shame and crime that they were victimized at all, but then to be made to feel guilty is being made a victim twice or count it even more since the guilt can last forever even when you know better.
You are right, through God's love a greater understanding can occur and feelings of guilt can be eradicatd.

Noelle said...

Forgiveness of self is so liberating and yes, so so hard. I beat myself up for things I should have long ago let go of!

Pain to Purpose said...

There definitely is freedom through forgiveness! Thanks for writing such an amazing post!
Carrie

Paula said...

Love form my heart to yours. It is hard, enlightening and I am grateful that we both allowed us to forgive ourselves.

Susan Marlene Kinney said...

Irrational guilt - such an ugly accuser. Thank you for finding your way to the light and giving others hope. God's love is so real and His forgiveness so precious enabling us to forgive ourselves, even when it wasn't our fault! I've not suffered this but so many have and it has devistated lives. Look how the Lord takes the ashes and pain and turns things around.
Thank you for sharing.

Deborah said...

I agree...how hard it is to forgive ourselves...but how freeing when we do!
God wants us free..xo

Deborah \0/

Esther Joy said...

Powerful post! Thank you for sharing your heart! And thank you for sharing your encouragement to me in my new endeavors in this world of blogging!

Esther Joy

Sharon Kirby said...

Beautiful. Simply beautiful.

Yes, I'd have to agree. It was a lot easier for me to accept God's forgiveness of certain sins, than it was for me to forgive myself.

But you're right - it was this final act that gave final freedom. The enemy uses guilt as a burden, and it blocks our relationships.

Guilt lifted - light indeed!

GOD BLESS!

Davina said...

I understand - forgiveness isn't about the person who hurt you, but about releasing the weight of responsibility tied to yourself.

Thank you for following my blog. If you go look, you'll see that I'm overhauling it. New stuff next week. Hope you like it :)

Deborah Ann said...

I struggle with that too. It's hard to forgive yourself, because...well...you live with yourself! You're facing the same barriers every time you look in the mirror. There's no escape. You're you, and you'll always be you. And unless you can come to terms with who you are in Christ, there doesn't seem to be any answers. It's a process, but nothing is impossible with God.

Yolanda said...

Well said...well said! God Bless you on your journey!

Terri Tiffany said...

You really said it here. The hardest part of anything in our lives is forgiving because it is about freeing ourselves. You did it!

Deb said...

So glad that you've experienced the multi-faceted beauty of forgiveness.

Your words refract His light.

Sweet dreams.

Lady Rose said...

Sarah,

It's often difficult for us sometimes to forgive ourselves, even after we have repented to the Lord of our sin, and He remembers it no more. I know that I face this difficulty sometimes.

I'm glad that the Lord helped you to show forgiveness to yourself, despite the many pains and sorrows that you faced within your life. Hopefully, this has helped you to find some freedom within your life.

Blessings,

-LR

Never Forsaken said...

Sometimes the stuff we say to ourselves makes it very hard to forgive ourselves, (even when it's something that was done 'to us' and not 'by us'.) I believe this is a trick from Satan to keep us bound so that we can't become who God designs us to be! Well, it's time for God's people to tell the devil to shut up already! so we can hear God's words more clearly.

My Big Secret Blog :) said...

Reading this, I had gooseflesh. Do ever get tired of how many times I say that in my comments here? But it's true. I can feel your power electrifying the page.