Can I Actually be Forgiven?
You have probably heard that Jesus is willing to forgive you of your sin. Maybe your grandma told you that when you were a kid or the pastor mentioned it the last time you went to a church service. The idea sounds pretty good. I mean our spouse probably isn’t going to forgive us any time soon for what we did. Our family isn’t going to let us live down our choices. But the thought of God forgiving us – that sounds good. The problem is we just doubt that it will happen. Usually we fall in to one of 3 groups…
1. We have hurt too many people to actually be forgiven.
Our sin hasn’t been some harmless thing that people can laugh off. Our sin has been damaging and in its wake is wasted potential and wrecked relationships. We have used people and abused people and we are consumed with guilt. Consequently we doubt that God will actually forgive the things that we have done.
2. We will never get out of this dark place that my sin has led us too.
There might be some of us that are consumed in the darkness. We’ve grown so used to the darkness we don’t even notice it anymore.
When you were a kid did you ever play hide and seek in the dark? You remember how right when you would turn off the light the darkness was paralyzing, but as time went on your eyes adjusted and it didn’t feel dark anymore? Maybe that has happened to us. Viewing pornography, our alcohol abuse, our strained relationships don’t really bother us any more. Our gossip and judgment of others doesn’t seem like that big of a deal. The dark places our mind goes doesn’t seem harmful anymore.
We have grown used to the darkness. And some of us, even if we wanted to get out of this place, doubt that we can. We are too entrenched in the darkness. We tell ourselves we were destined for a life of hardship, depression, addiction, and sin.
3. We doubt we can live a life that isn’t dominated by sin.
We love God. We want to be faithful, we just doubt we can ever live a life that isn’t controlled by our sin. Why? Because we have tried and tried again to stop and it has yet to happen. It seems like we are destined to live a life that is consumed in sin. We have read books, sought counsel, and prayed about it, yet it never seems to change.
Some doubt that forgiveness is possible. Some doubt that a rescue is possible and some doubt that sin will ever cease being their master.
My guess is that you can find yourself in one of these 3 categories.
If you can I want to point you to one passage that might change everything… Psalm 103:1-3
Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins…
May this be a reminder to you today- that forgiveness is possible.
Maybe we have had some major self-destructive behavior. Maybe we have done things that we don’t want anyone to know about. Maybe we are reading this and have done things that would shock others if they found out. But I promise- God is willing to forgive!
Psalm 103 goes on to say, The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. 9He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; 10he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. 11For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; 12as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Now that is some good news!
Today you are holding on to the pain, regret, remorse, and guilt. It affects you deep down inside and causes you to stay distant from God. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The doubt that you have can be put behind you and you can move into a future that doesn’t include the sins of your past. Some of us need to let go of the doubt- and trust God can forgive us of our sin. He has given his One and only son just for this…
7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. 8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:7-9
Let go of the doubt… Forgiveness is possible.