To be completely honest, it took a while to accept God's love and forgiveness. He saw worth and value, I saw failure. The weight of guilt had its grip on me after failing God, by breaking a certain promise I made to Him. I kept asking God over and over again to forgive me--no matter how repetitive my prayers were, the guilt still remained.
One particular evening my pastor at the time wanted to know why I wasn't dancing. I told her that I sinned against God. I couldn't bring myself to dance again for a while. She then explained, the feeling of guilt I had did not come from God, but from the enemy. After encouraging me continue to serve Him, I decided to do a study on God's forgiveness. I didn't want to just know God forgave me and that He still had a great plan for my life; I wanted to also believe it.
I began to read and meditate on the truth about God's nature--His love, grace, mercy, and forgiveness. In reading the truth, I had to decide if I was going to believe it.
The truth is this, God heard me the first time I asked for forgiveness--He also forgave me that very same moment and tossed my sins to the bottom of the sea. I couldn't rely on my feelings. By faith, I decided to rely on God and believe what He said. I chose to keep going. I chose to continue to pursue the One who first pursued me.
"Where is the god who can compare with you--wiping the slate clean of guilt, turning a blind eye, a death ear, to the past sins of your purged and precious people? You don't nurse your anger and don't stay angry long, for mercy is your specialty. That's what you love most. And compassion is on its way to us. You'll stamp out our wrongdoing. You'll sink our sins to the bottom of the ocean..." Micah 7:18-20 -MSG
"As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust." Psalm 103: 12-13 -NIV
DEAR LOVED ONE,
You are not a failure. God is not surprised by your shortcomings--In fact, He died for them all. Don't allow guilt to stagnate you. Accept God's forgiveness and get back in the race. The moment God forgave you, He also wiped your slate clean--tossing your sins to the bottom of the sea.
"My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father--Jesus Christ, the righteous one. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world." 1 John 2:1-2 -NIV
The enemy will never be forgiven for turning away from God and he knows that. Because of this, he accuses us day and night before God.
The truth is, we don't deserve forgiveness. Christ (who is without sin) has every right to condemn us, but He doesn't.
" Let anyone of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her...At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, 'Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?' 'No one sir' she said. 'Then neither do I condemn you,' Jesus declared. 'Go now and leave your life of sin.'" John 8:7-11
God and His great love for us, chose to die for our sins. For this reason, we shouldn't take God's grace and forgiveness lightly. His love should drives us to draw closer to Him.
"Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water." Hebrews 10:22 -NIV
"What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?." Romans 6:1-2 -NIV
God is faithful in His love towards us. Let us strive to please Him. Lets live to honor Him for the loving God He is.
If you want to give your life to God and repent for your sins, the word of God says: "If you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved." Romans 10:7 -NIV
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9 -NIV
Know that salvation is not about religious rituals/routines--it's about relationship with God and circumcision of your heart. Don't just say it--believe it and live it out. This is a journey. You are not perfect and God knows that. When we surrender our lives to God, He works in us to present us spotless on the day we stand before Christ.
The angels in heaven are rejoicing over you!
If this portion of my testimony has encouraged you, please share in hope that others will also be encouraged.