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Accepting Forgiveness From God and Forgiving Yourself (Insights From Psalm 32)

 

Ever felt like God could never forgive you, or you couldn’t forgive yourself, because of something you’ve done? Ever felt sick because of the sin in your life? Have you lost the simple joy of being redeemed by God? Psalm 32 is short but it’s packed full of great truth and encouragement and addresses all of those issues. Let’s spend the next couple of weeks looking at it more in depth. Take a moment to read the entire psalm here and then let’s dive a little deeper into the first seven verses.

Verses 1-2

“Blessed (happy) is the one whose transgressions (rebellion) are forgiven (to lift, bear up, carry, take), whose sins are covered. Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit.”

+As followers of Jesus, we are blessed! We are forgiven! We are redeemed! Isn’t it so easy to get caught up with all the problems and annoyances you encounter on a daily basis? Yet, when we put our focus on those problems it takes our focus off of God and often makes the problems seem bigger and more powerful than they are. Let’s take time every day to meditate on the joyous truth that Jesus brings and to walk in the blessing He has poured out on us!

Verses 3-5

“When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. 
For day and night your hand was heavy on me; 
my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer. Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. 
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.” 
And you forgave the guilt of my sin.”

+The Bible says that “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23) and I believe that when we hold on to a pattern of sin it will create a feeling of death and decay in our daily life; in how we perceive God, ourselves and in how we relate to others. It takes a physical toll on your body as well as your mind. Sometimes we are afraid to confess and acknowledge sin to God, and yet He knows what’s in our heart, so let’s come clean before God and receive the freedom of forgiveness that only He gives!

+Now, even when we ask for forgiveness sometimes we have a hard time believing that God has forgiven us. But the truth is His word says, “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). When we come to Him in repentance (to make a decision to change our behavior going forward), He doesn’t even think twice about forgiving us….it’s a done deal!

+Even when we believe that God has forgiven us there can still be lingering guilt because we haven’t forgiven ourselves. This is where we need to realize that the God of the universe, who uniquely and specially knit us together in our mother’s womb, has shown us abundant grace and forgiveness. We need to take a leap of faith and extend that forgiveness to ourselves. If God thinks it’s appropriate to forgive us…..then we don’t need to hold a grudge against ourselves.

Verses 6-7

“Therefore let all the faithful pray to you while you may be found; 
surely the rising of the mighty waters will not reach them. You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.”

+Let’s not hesitate to come to God in prayer, to ask for forgiveness, to receive His forgiveness. That way when trouble comes we are bolstered in our spirits and we will be secure in Him. God is our refuge, protector, and joyous deliverer. Hebrews 4:15-16 says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” God is for us and He is approachable! He is there to help us in our greatest need. Let’s walk in the confidence of knowing that the God of everything is our friend and helper.

So….

+Are you taking time to be happy simply that you are forgiven and redeemed?

+Are you feeling dead because of your sin? Make a decision to repent, receive God’s forgiveness and forgive yourself. It’s time to joyously live the abundant life Jesus has given you!

+Are you regularly “buoying” your spirit by spending time with God? Let’s celebrate the truth that God is our refuge and deliverer!

Prayer

God, You are my everything! You forgive, deliver, save and renew me. You show me grace in every circumstance. Thank you for the awesome instruction and words of encouragement in Psalm 32. Help me to receive Your forgiveness, forgive myself and be encouraged by spending time with You. Amen.

 

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