We know Jesus came to this world out of the love the Father has for us. We also know Jesus was not forced to go to the cross but out of His love for us, He chose to stay on the cross for our redemption from sin, once and for all. It was this love that covered a multitude of sin, a whole world load; past present, and future sins. Yet we forget not only did Jesus blot out our sins, His death also brought healing. “Surely, He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes, we are healed.”. (Isaiah 53:4-5 NKJV). He took upon Himself all of our pain and suffering so we could have peace and healing.
So, why do so many of us go around wounded and hurt by this world, if He came to take it away from us? Most of the time when we forgive someone who has hurt us we don’t do it completely. We hold on take note of it so that if they do it again we remind ourselves and might even say to ourselves, “I knew that they didn’t mean they were sorry.” Think about it; Jesus died for our sins, long before we were ever born, forgave us of our sins, knew that we would sin again, yet not once does He get bent out of shape because we sin, maybe even the same sin we already confessed. We fail to pass on the same forgiveness to those that have hurt us. By withholding the forgiveness that we should extend to others is also withholding the love that covers the hurt. Forgiving doesn’t mean they were right it is just releasing the hold bitterness has a hold on you.
There is one more person that you need to forgive you. Many times we feel guilty for the feelings that we have. The fact we let it happened to us. We hold ourselves to a standard much of the time no one can really achieve. We tend to get mad and frustrated with ourselves because we failed our own expectations. This adds to the negative self-talk and we fail to love ourselves because we see ourselves as unworthy of being loved. The problem with this is when we don’t love ourselves it is hard to love others. When Jesus was confronted by the Pharisees about what is the top commandment, He answered to love God with all you have in your body. Then he said, “And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:39 NKJV). You can’t reach out to others and show them love, when you don’t love yourself much. How well I know this because it was easy for me to get frustrated with others, even write people off because I saw myself as no matter what I did I was unworthy of being loved. Even now there are times that I am unsure of myself, thank God for the friends that He has put in my life that remind me that I’m doing exactly what God wants me to and doing a good job at it.
The one thing about loving ourselves the way God loves us is it stops the negative self-talk. When we allow ourselves the opportunity to make mistakes and not hold us to a standard of perfection no one could achieve, we then leave no room for the negative self-talk. Should self-talk tries to sneak in all we need to do is remind ourselves that is not how God sees us and dismiss the thought as not being true. No wonder Paul told us; “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” (Philippians 4:8 NKJV). This is the checklist I use when the negative self-talk pops up, it helps me not focus on the negative self-talk since it doesn’t meet what is in that list.
Let me leave you with this quote by James LoGalbo about God’s love; “Our identity isn’t in our scars. Our identity is rooted in the scars of Jesus.” That is the love that heals.