Faith, Personal Growth

Why Is Forgiving Myself SO Hard?

Photo Credit: jprossler via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: jprossler via Compfight cc

Yesterday just started off wrong. I snoozed through, and apparently turned off, my 5 am alarm to work out. I slept until my husband came in from the gym waking me up 15 minutes later than I intended to.  Ugh.  Already beginning the day with a big “F!”


By 8:30 am, I was in a cranky tizzy.  With the swirl of “mommy fail” emotions heaped on me, I reacted poorly to the resistance of my 2 year-old who wanted to watch Spiderman instead of getting dressed. If only we could.

In the midst of our struggle and sheer force of putting pants on wiggly little legs, I yelled.  I raised my voice angrily with “STOP IT! Grrrrr.”

It didn’t help.  Does it ever?

He only continued to cry and I continued to wrangle his little body into pant legs and arm sleeves.  In the midst of the tearful drama, he squeaked out something that froze my heart. A small, little, whimpering,

“I sorry, Mommy. I sorry.”

Ouch. That hit a nerve. Apology, 2 year-old style.

Of course, I forgave him.  And he forgave me, forgetting all about it as he cheerfully pointed out trucks and dirt and big metal tubes on our way to school.

But, shame was massive on my heart. The Mommy Guilt. Ugh.

How could I?

I’ve scarred him for life.

I’ve emblazoned on his heart a picture of me, the angry, yelling mother.  That’s all I am.

Sometimes the hardest part is… forgiving myself.  Not to heap up on my shoulders the shame and regret. Not to trudge around with the “why did I” or “how could I” thoughts, altering the lens from which I see myself.

It’s a powerful and damaging thing- unforgiveness. And, it can easily morph into the mindset that I am inflicting the appropriate punishment for my own wrong-doing.  Simply, that is not true.

Jesus came for you and for me in FULL forgiveness- to wash away whatever we have done. I’m serious, whatever. And if He forgives all that junk, then surely I can and must forgive myself.

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will He harbor His anger forever: He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:8-12

Through the #messylove life of Hosea and Gomer, we see the full extent of His true, unconditional forgiveness. My friend, it’s the very essence of His love. A love that grants ultimate, complete, cartwheel-turning freedom!

Are you heavy under the heap of shame and regret?

Do you live under the weight of “why did I” or “how could I?”

Are you trying to punish yourself for “that stupid thing” you’ve done or are currently doing?

Do you limit love in your life because you don’t think you deserve it?

On THURSDAY, we will continue our study in forgiveness and UNCOVER the KEY to forgiving yourself.  I’ll see you then!

Click HERE for other posts in this series.