I’M NOT GOOD ENOUGH RIGHT NOW
Admitting sinful behavior and expressing sorrow for that behavior is something that we do. We find that it’s a struggle to let go of the reasons why our behavior is someone else’s fault.
When we finally relinquish our excuses, a strange thing often happens: rather than seeking forgiveness, we want to do penance for our sins. Sometimes, we even focus on how sinful we have been; memories crowd in of unpleasant scenes. Instead of seeking forgiveness, which is something God does for us, we find ourselves dwelling on the past. As a result, I hear statements such as:
- “Can’t you see I am crying?”
- “Can’t you see I’m depressed?”
- “My self-esteem is destroyed!”
- “I hate myself.”
- “I am unworthy.”
- “My self-image is battered.”
In these situations, perhaps more sins need to be dealt with that haven’t been acknowledged. Perhaps we don’t really accept the fact that our behavior was sinful.
Step 3: I need to ask: “God, forgive me of my sins.”
More likely we need to review the good news that Jesus shed His blood for our sins to make the free gift of forgiveness available to us.
We just need to receive it.
Let me remind you that this encounter is directly between us and God. Only He can forgive and cleanse sin. Step 1 of confession and step 2 of sorrow are things that I do. Asking for forgiveness is something I also do, but the forgiving is something that only God does. As the apostle John affirms:
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 1:9, NKJV
So, none of the penance programs will help. God simply expects us to receive His forgiveness. It’s free. His Son shed His blood to make this free gift available to us. I need to accept the cure for my past sin and say, “God, forgive me of my sin.”
I find it interesting that Jesus spoke and the sick were healed. He spoke and the man’s sins were forgiven. When we sincerely say, “God, forgive me of my sins,” He does.