Barb's Space

Observations about life, family, church...anything else that is on my mind from the perspective that God rules, no matter what

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Location: Indianapolis, IN, United States

I am a 65 year young woman who has changed much in the last few years. I'm single again. I changed jobs twice (learned new skills), had a serious stroke in 2008, "retired" and after getting better started taking up new interests, and am continuing to get more fit. Some things have matured. I've enjoyed watching my three guys grow into men I respect and am proud of. One waited 11 years to have his first birth child. Today I'm a grandma of six (four boys and 2 girls between two families)! I have learned to love Jesus even more, and I have regained my sense of adventure. Someone said, "The best is yet to be."--I believe it, if I keep an open mind and heart and keep growing and walking with God.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Judgment vs Examination and Forgiveness

In my counseling sessions, we are exploring different topics. My counselor asked me to write about the differences between judging myself and others and examining myself. I was also on the subject of forgiveness of self. What came as I wrote may be food for thought, so I thought I'd put it out here. I hope it blesses someone.

Judgment of self and others means coming to a conclusion about motive as well as the act itself. It deals with the person's rightness or wrongness, not just the action. If I judge myself or others, I am saying my whole (or their whole) personhood is tied up in what was done. But because I can't completely know my own or anyone else's motive, my judgment cannot be just. I am consigning myself or someone else to be (in my thinking at least) the person that action by itself would say I am or they are. I am saying change is not possible. The Lord does not want me to do that because I cannot see the whole picture, so that kind of judgment is wrong.

God does, however, want me to examine myself and my actions. He wants me to bring them before His throne and ask Him about why I do such and so. This is so He can help me get to the root of things and allow Him to correct and train me in the way He would have me live. That will bring change to my life and help me walk more like Jesus.

The Lord wants me to be willing to go deep with Him into my why's. I cannot be corrected and trained except superficially without doing so. But to be able to do so, I must be able to forgive myself or I also will not be able to grow. If I hold on in shame to what I discover about me, I will hide it and bury it deeper. Change will not come that way. But if I bring into the light of God's presence, good things can happen. To top it off, He already knows what I'm going to share with Him. He knew it all along and was just waiting for me to discover it.

Self-forgiveness is a hard thing, though. It means I have to give up the idea of judging my own motives and playing I'm God and can decide about me. It means I have to believe deep down that God is good and that He won't condemn me. It means I must believe in His grace, mercy, forgiveness and healing more than I believe in my right to hold on to and hide my sin. It means I must love God more than myself and want to walk with Him more than anything else.

Only God helps me become able to forgive myself. I can't without His grace, but with Him I can if I will to. I can release sin and shame to Him and if I do it goes into His sea of forgetfulness because He already bore it for me at the cross and He doesn't want to torment me with it. He wants me free.

1 Great Ideas:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

barb,
this topic touches all of us, it came up recently in a group setting. Jesus looked at a crippled man, lowered through the roof to see Him. He looked into his heart first, then forgave him of his sins, later healed his body. which is easier? which is easier to accept? do we gladly "dance" in spiritual healing?
i'll continue to pray that you gain both, in the order the Lord chooses for you.

August 20, 2009 10:34 AM

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