“As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit.” Ps 130:4 MSG
The psalmist wrote: “Help, God—the bottom has fallen out of my life!…hear my cry for help! Listen hard! Open your ears…to my cries for mercy. If you…kept records on wrongdoings, who would stand a chance? As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit…that’s why you’re worshiped” (vv. 1-4 TM). But God’s forgiveness is worthless unless you receive it by faith—and then forgive yourself! You say, “But what about my past?” The moment you receive God’s forgiveness you no longer have a past—you only have a future. However, you must do three things: (1) Realize that everybody fails. Samson failed by getting too close to the wrong woman (See Jdg 16). Jonah failed by trying to run from the assignment God gave him (See Jnh 1:3). Peter failed when he denied Jesus (See Mt 26:34). Yet God forgave and used each of them for His glory. (2) You must process your emotions. Regret: “If only I hadn’t done it.” Frustration: “I did my best. Why wasn’t it good enough?” Self-pity: “Nobody loves me so I’ll just sit here and lick my wounds.” Paralysis: “I’ve done it too often. My mistake is too big. I’ll never get beyond it.” Your emotions are lying to you—don’t believe them! (3) When you fall, get back up again. “Though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again” (Pr 24:16 NIV). Notice, the righteous as well as the unrighteous fall. So be like the lady who said, “I’m never down. I’m either up, or I’m getting up!” How about it—are you ready to get up and try again? If so, God will work with you.