I love that the Bible says that God is rich in mercy. In fact, I believe His grace and forbearance come in waves, and like surfers catch the swells and ride atop their crests effortlessly, when we flow with the currents of His goodness, we experience a life that is exhilaratingly free. That said, in order to tap into this liberty, we must do one very important thing, and that is to forgive ourselves. While some of us struggle every day with the shame of wrong choices or hard living in our past, others of us grapple with the pain of not being perfect. And because we are made in the image of a flawless Creator, we want to live up to His standards. However, all of us are keenly aware that we’ve fallen short. Knowing this, there’s only one way to bridge the gap between self-condemnation and manifold mercy, and that is to look to the cross. I dare say that even many of us who’ve trusted in Jesus don’t understand the full wonder of His sacrifice. No matter how many times we hear about it, we still walk around striving to meet impossible standards and pretending to be better off than we are. If this is you, my simple encouragement today is to stop it. Cease putting on a show of perfection, allow grace to permeate your heart, and then let it all hang out. In Christ, you’ve received enough love to fuel you for the rest of your life — your only task is to receive it.
My friend, the One who knew no sin became sin so that you could become the righteousness of God. This means that even if you mess up, you are freer than you can fathom. Your life is hidden with your Heavenly Father in Christ, and in His watchful care, you can shed the encumbrance of unattainable standards and run joyfully in grace and mercy. No matter where you go, you are never out of the bounds of His love, so forgive yourself, surrender the past, and fully embrace the present with His blessing.