This is from my friend Meg Pittman in Argentina:
“He who covers over an offense promotes love”
Saturday night at church I prayed with a girl who was absolutely distraught over past decisions she had made in an unhealthy relationship. As she clutched my hand and tearfully told her story I wanted somehow to express how much the Lord loved her, regardless of how dirty or miserable she felt. I shared that her sins, once confessed, were completely forgiven and forgotten, and we prayed that she could accept that forgiveness from the Lord and ultimately forgive herself.
I am currently reading a chapter of Proverbs a day, and the next morning I read 17:9 “he who covers over an offense promotes love” which corresponds to the idea that forgiveness is an integral part of love. God is the perfect example of a perfect love that keeps no record of wrongs (1 Cor 13:5). I sometimes mistake guilt for humility, and I resist God’s forgiveness because I know I am not worthy of it. It is impossible for me to comprehend the fact that God separates me completely from my sins, as far as the east is from the west, but if I don’t trust in this truth I am spitting on the cross, not being humble.
God shows His love for us by dying for us while we were still sinners. He has forgiven us and therefore we must forgive our neighbors- and ourselves. While taking responsibility and learning from mistakes is important, we can’t let guilt keep us from boldly approaching the throne of God. We understand that We don’t deserve His affection, but if we truly understand His love it will translate to healthy relationships and a healthy self-image.
Father, thank you for your cleansing, freeing love. Help me to accept your embrace and express your love in all my relationships.