As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.
Sometimes I ask women if they think they’re smarter than God. They always answer, “Of course not.” I then proceed to explain that if they asked God to forgive them but still feel guilty, they obviously haven’t forgiven themselves. If God has forgiven, but we can’t, we must think we know better than God. Because we live in a sin-filled world that accepts us very conditionally, we tend to accept ourselves very conditionally too. Most of us find it very difficult to imagine how a just God can forgive us completely when mortals seem to keep score of our every wrong. For forgiveness to go from head knowledge to heart knowledge takes a lot of practice.
The Lord’s Prayer tells us that our sins will be forgiven as we forgive others. This is another important point. I see clients who hold grudges toward themselves because they are holding so many toward God and others. They think that our unforgiveness will somehow result in vengeance on those who have hurt us. But it is more likely to make them sick, depressed, and miserable. Forgiveness is absolutely necessary for joy for the journey.
Prayer: Lord, help me choose today to release my grudges toward myself, You, or others. Lord, help me to grasp the reality of your forgiveness.