Breathe In, Breathe Out...
Take a deep breath before you read:
You will never be worthy of Jesus’ love. You will never deserve His mercy and grace.There, now that that’s out in the open, let go of the guilt of never measuring up. Because the beauty of His sacrifice is that you don’t have to. God’s grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9). God’s grace is omniscient (Psalm 147:5). God’s grace is circumferential (Psalm 34:18). God’s grace has made you worthy (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12). There is nothing you can do to earn it—it is a gift (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Now take a deep breath and accept that you are enough. You were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27) [Breathe that in for a moment].
You are not a failure because you failed. Nothing you have ever done or will ever do will keep Him from loving you (Romans 8:29). God created you on purpose, for a purpose (Psalm 139:13; Jeremiah 1:5). You don’t surprise Him with who you are. You were intentional.
Carrying the weight of guilt and shame leaves you feeling exposed—naked—on display for the world to see. But you are not to be concerned with what the world sees, you only need to concern yourself with what the Lord sees; and He sees your heart (Luke 16:15). Don’t let the devil mislead you to believe that you can’t have the best of what God has to offer (Genesis 3:1). He is a liar and a manipulator (2 Corinthians 11:14). “Who told you that you were naked?” (Genesis 3:11)
Remember when the disciples were in the boat and a storm raged around them (right after Jesus fed the 5000)? (Mark 6:47-52) They were “toiling” among the storm. This word translated in Greek is “torment, test, pain, torturous”. How many times have you felt tormented by your shame and guilt? But notice what happened in the midst of the storm: Jesus met them (miraculously by walking on water). But when the disciples saw Him, they were afraid. Even though they’d just witnessed His miracle of feeding 5000, seeing Him walking on water towards them, they cried out in fear. The translation is “to raise a cry from the depth of the throat.” Have you ever been there? Have you ever been so fearful of what Jesus may think of you that you didn’t realize He came out to meet you amidst your storm, too? Notice His response: “Be of good cheer, it is I; be not afraid.” Not only did He comfort them through words, He got into the boat with them.
Sweet friends, let Jesus into your boat and into your heart. Let go of that guilt and shame you’re carrying around. Exhale it all out. Jesus carried it to the Cross, and with His last breath, He let it go (Hebrews 12:2-3). You can, too. Your sins are forgiven (Luke 7:48-49). The Greek translation of forgiven is aphiemi; it is also used for the English word suffer. We are forgiven (aphiemi) because Christ suffered (aphiemi). We are One with Jesus (John 17:21; 1 Corinthians 6:17; Galatians 3:28).
Allow that thought to sink into the depths of your soul. Allow yourself to forgive yourself, just as He has forgiven you. Allow yourself to breathe...