II Corinthians 5:17-19
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.
It is hard to forgive others sometimes. Other times, it is even harder to forgive ourselves. Either way, a lot of bitternes can settle into our hearts and not allow us to see the value in forgiveness. But when we deny ourselves and others the gift of pure forgiveness, we deny God an opportunity to bless us with reconciliation.
God is the model of never ending forgiveness, to the point of great sacrifice. To forgive us, He sacrificed His own son. Yet, we (me included) seem to hang onto our pride and deny others forgiveness, as if it were some life-giving source that we cannot part with, because it would be the end of us. It is hard to let others feel the relief of being forgiven. After all, it is that one last thing we can use against someone else, so that they feel some portion of the hurt we feel. However, how much has God forgiven us? I dare say, way more than we will ever have to forgive of others.
When you feel like you’ve about screwed up everything you can, and you find yourself kicking yourself about things, acknowledge your faults, but also forgive yourself, because God is there ready to forgive you before you even think about it. Oh, and don’t forget to forgive others, too. 🙂