That old saying, “Sticks and stones my break my bones, but words will never hurt me” is a LIE. Words don’t just hurt – They leave us paralyzed in our tracks making us think we’re not good enough for God to use us.

We’ve all made bad choices in our weakest moments. To be honest, we probably think about them often. We ask the question – Would our life be different if we hadn’t detoured? And just when we think our past is behind us, here come the reminders. Society labels us as liars, cheaters, insecure, suicidal, addicts, dysfunctional, and so much more. Leaving us to exist in a limited capacity rather than live in the fullness God intended for us.

So how do we start living in the fullness of God?

…By accepting our forgiveness.

Earlier this year our church did a sermon series and book together called Seven Mile Miracle. It showed how we could grow spiritually from Jesus’ seven final statements on the cross. During one of our volunteer rallies we had an assignment on the first mile, Forgiveness. We had to take a selfie, write what forgiveness meant to us, and post it to social media. Not for likes, but to be transparent in hopes of making a difference in at least one person’s life who would read it. I’ve decided to share my post with you.

“Honestly for years forgiveness was something I abused. I took advantage of God’s grace and mercy, playing rushing roulette with my soul. I would willfully do things I knew weren’t pleasing to God but knew He would forgive me. But somehow I couldn’t forgive myself. I guess because I didn’t feel worthy of it.

How and why would God want to forgive a person like me?  

After really changing my heart, my focus, and truly digging into the word of God I learned the how and the why.

The answer is simply LOVE! He loves me more than I love myself and His actions always show it. It’s the love He has for me that’s with me when I detour! He’s right there with me, rallying me to get back on track. Because I’ve accepted my forgiveness and received my freedom I can truly forgive and love others like God!

From His forgiveness I can truly smile knowing I’m loved, I’m enough, I’m victorious, I’m worthy, and so much more! The wounds I once had are now healed. My scars have a story and have given me the strength to tell it – hopefully helping others along the way!”

Through this assignment I realized the only way to accept God’s forgiveness was to understand His love. When I think of God’s love I’m reminded that it’s:

  • A Gift {John 3:16}
  • Forgiving {Daniel 9:9}
  • Indestructible {8:37-39}
  • Perfect {1 John 4:18-19}

People will throw sticks and stones at you and hold on to your past. But not God. He knows every detail of your life. From the things you’re willing to share to your darkest secret you hope no one finds out about. Yet He still loves you. He still wants you.

We all had a little dirt on us at some point in life and maybe we still do. But we’re all a part of a special group – the one God loves to use. Just look at a few people in the bible with a questionable past and God used them anyway:

  • Jacob was liar
  • Noah was drunk
  • Rahab was a prostitute
  • David was an adulterer AND murderer
  • Elijah was suicidal
  • Peter denied Christ
  • Lazarus was DEAD!

See, I told you.  They’re interesting characters just like us!  How much more can God do through you!

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