As we continue to explore self-forgiveness I think we need to ask ourselves why it’s so hard to grant ourselves the same grace we give everyone else. Even on a daily basis we grant forgiveness and grace; to our spouses, our co-workers, or if we are parents to our children.
Author Stephen Arterburn says, “I’ve always believed that half the battle in changing something is in finding out why the thing is there in the first place.”
Isn’t that so true?
Perhaps someone in our past – a parent, a misguided minister, or a relative influenced us to believe it was dangerous to let any misdeed slip out of memory, and made very sure it didn’t.
Perhaps over time the guilt has become as constant and dependable a companion. We get comfortable with it, we think…but in truth it slowly eats away at us.
Or perhaps we get confused about what forgiveness really means and buy into the myth that forgiving is the same as forgetting. Too often we believe it means we’re letting ourselves off some hook we’re supposed to be hanging on.
Each of us may have your own reasons. I’d love to hear them. But I have learned that whatever reasons we may come up with for why we can’t forgive ourselves – they’re all wrong.