A woman I know, made some decisions in her young years that proved to be regretful. She had two abortions in the span of her 20’s. They were decisions she felt, at the times, were right. After all, they were allowed by the law of the land, yet it wasn’t easy for her to do. Regret hid under layers of achievements, smiles, and outer adornment. Later, it could hide no longer as it hit her even harder when she realized the reality of having made those decisions from God’s perspective. I remember her story well, how one day while going home from an appointment, on a warm sunny summer afternoon. The conviction of her actions hit her like a ton of bricks. Tears covered her face beneath her eyes. Her body began to heave as she sobbed, so much so she had to pull over to maintain control of her vehicle while her uncontrollable weeping to took over.
A man, who got fed up with years of mistreatment and abuse, took matters into his own hands and lost nearly two decades of his life as a result, and now needs to rebuild his life, his relationships, and his confidence.
Someone else made some risky decisions as a stock broker and experienced, what he saw as a catastrophic loss, that caused self-resentment and fear that he’d lose a lot more.
And, your story is…?
Despite what it is, trust, you are not alone. We all have one, maybe more. As a matter of fact, Romans 3:23 states that “…all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” And, unfortunately, there’s no running away from the fact that what was done was done; that what was said was said; or that the accident/incident happened. Be it 30 minutes ago, 30 months ago, or 30 years ago, you have carried around a regretful heart full of sorrow that has, in your eyes, grayed out all of your tomorrows, because…
What do you do when something you’ve done can’t be undone?
What do you do when something has gone wrong and it can no longer be made right?
What do you do when something was said knowing words can never be unsaid?
There’s a few things you can do. They will begin to position you to receive, as Isaiah 61:3 says, all The Lord promised to His children, which is to “…provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.” It all starts as you…
Embrace Everlasting Love
Understand that no matter how bad you think it was, God loves you with an everlasting love. A love He will never take away from you. Though it has seemed to elude you, joy is still in reach for you. It sits at your step waiting for you to take it in. This gift has engraved on it something for you to remind yourself of daily in saying, Psalm 27:13 “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.” Because He wants you to share in His happiness. Isaiah 30:18 ERV states that “…the Lord is waiting to show his mercy to you. He wants to rise and comfort you. The Lord is the God who does the right thing, so he will bless everyone who waits for his help.”
You can embrace His love by spending time with Him, and embodying all the good things He says about you. And, emboldening yourself with how He chooses to shape, mold, and grow you. It’s important, however, to not be timid in approaching the Throne of Grace because of regrets of past deeds. One thing that helps with releasing the uneasiness to pray is to know that…
Conviction Does Not Equal Condemnation
You see, all too often, many of us can’t forgive ourselves for past failues that we’ve already asked God’s forgiveness for and yet have not continued to make. It’s because we fall into the trap of ungodly condemnation. Feelings of regret from past actions, despite how long ago, can come from two places, Holy Spirit conviction, or condemnation, sometimes interchanged with judgment, which sources from either the Holy Spirit, a misconstrued perspective of what’s right and wrong, or from demonic influences. Understanding the difference will help you to better discern where and why guilt arises, even if you’ve already confessed and repented according to the Will of The Lord. And, it will give you a gage to evaluate what you can use to allow yourself to grow and what you can ignore and throw away.
Regarding Conviction, as John 16:8 ESV reminds us, the Holy Spirit comes to “…convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment”. And, this is, of course, in addition to all the other wonderful things that He comes to do for us with His comfort, defense, and power. To convict, according to the Biblical Greek meaning is to reprove, rebuke (which are both akin to reprimand) and to admonish (which is to warn) in regards to a person having done, or the propensity to do, something wrong. Revelation 3:19 MSG says “The people I love, I call to account—prod and correct and guide so that they’ll live at their best. Up on your feet, then! About face! Run after God!” I absolutely love that it says “…so that they’ll live at their best!” Yes, as with a natural parent, He may have chided you, but He does so out of love because He wants you to be your best self; to come into all He’s made you to be. That chiding causes, what I call “good” guilt. The kind that makes you aware that what you’re about to do, or what was done or said, is wrong. That is very helpful, for example, when we have a thorn in our sides that we struggle with but don’t want to keep falling into. So, the Holy Spirit will sometimes send a word of conviction as a warning to give you a chance to decide to take the way out of what tempts you. Or, to give you a chance to confess and change towards more favorable actions.
On the other hand, Condemnation/Judgment is a final decision, a judgment, about a person based on what that person has been perceived as doing. God condemns or judge those who have deliberately decided to live in sin, despite knowing or having heard about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, yet rejects Him. Thus, trampling the Son of God under their feet as said according to Hebrews 10:29. But, if there is anyone you know who has taken this stance, don’t give up on them. Encourage them not to give up on seeing and living life God’s way. There’s still time for better decisions to be made. For 2 Peter 3:9 NIV, says that “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” This is part of His Gift of Grace that is available. The only thing needed is to ask and receive. Below, towards the end of the post, is a prayer that can lead you to that opportunity. Please share or retweet this article to give the Gift of God’s Grace to whoever needs it. God will certainly bless you for it!
The devil, however, who comes to kill your faith, steal your joy, and destroy your destiny will use condemnation as one of his tactics in attempts to complete those very assignments. An example we can clearly see where the enemy tried to do this is in Jesus’ trial and condemnation to be crucified. The enemy led people to wrongly condemn Jesus, but Jesus was not “convicted” in His Spirit by His Spirit as doing anything wrong because He had done nothing wrong. It is here where many of us get stuck in not forgiving ourselves because the enemy will wrongly cause you to feel condemned for either what you never did or what you already repented for and don’t do. Unfortunately, sometimes our own understanding of what is okay and not okay with God can play a part in the enemy’s making us regret things we should not feel guilty about. For instance, we sometimes feel guilty about what other people actually did wrong to us. It’s a form of false and misplaced guilt. This happens because we begin to believe his lies instead of believing the truths of God.
Hopefully, this has given you a clearer perspective on conviction versus condemnation, and helps you to accept that…
You Deserve Forgiveness, Even Your Own
Past memories have relentless ways of keeping the past in our present that causes us to judge ourselves out of our future. The Holy Spirit is our Advocate who stands for us and stands with us helping us to remember what Jesus taught us about His forgiveness and the freedom it has granted us. As we are reminded in Romans 8:1,4 ESV, that “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus… in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” So, when you begin to hear the nagging accusations remember that despite what you may think, you are worthy of forgiveness. Zechariah 3:1,3,4 shows us that what God thinks, is superior over what anyone else thinks in telling us that “The angel showed me Joshua the high priest, standing in front of the angel of the Lord and Satan was standing by Joshua’s right side. Satan was there to accuse Joshua of doing wrong. Joshua was wearing a dirty robe as he stood in front of the angel. Then the angel said to the other angels standing near him, ‘Take those dirty clothes off Joshua.’ Then the angel spoke to Joshua. He said, ‘Now, I have taken away your guilt, and I am giving you a new change of clothes.’”
Joshua didn’t fight the angels of The Lord, saying he doesn’t deserve to be happy. He didn’t look at the blessing in front of him and question “Why would God do this for me after all the wrong I’ve done?” He didn’t say, “No! Don’t put new clothes on me! I’m only going to dirty them again!” He simply received the Gift of Grace. He humbly accepted a new chance to do things differently. Despite what you’ve done, you can do things differently because…
Mistakes Allow for Better Remakes
Mistakes don’t make you stupid, they can make you smarter and stronger, if you let them. The woman in the opening story, as mentioned, originally thought she had made the right decisions, only to later find they weren’t right in God’s eyes. As she went further along in her story, her encounter with God proved to be a comforting one. Comforting in God’s unlimited understanding of the reasons behind, while not condoning, her actions at the time. In addition, The Lord began helping her to understand ways to make wiser decisions later. She knows now what she did not know then. And that makes her smarter and stronger. This understanding and guidance is available to you too. You may not be able to use it to correct what happened, but consider these:
- Let God use you
In having taken responsibility for your part in the mishap, how can what you learned to do or not to do help keep someone else from making the same missteps?
- Let It Transform You
What options, in line with the Will of God, are available to you to consistently do differently this time, to prevent what happened before?
You are not still here to allow your life to sink into the abyss of where the past lives. God’s giving you new mercies every morning to begin to restore and revive your life. It’s as close as you deciding to…
Claim Your Gift of Grace
You have mourned your mistake(s) long enough. According to Ecclesiastes 3:4, There’s “A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;” As you read this message, know that your time to weep and mourn has reached its pivot point to now begin to become a time for you to laugh and dance. And, Psalm 126:6 “Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.” Believe, beloved of God, the tears you’ve sown, in the Mighty Hands of God, can start to bring forth a harvest of joy!
It’s yours to take, beloved.
Will you take it? Allowing yourself to, first, embrace everlasting love from The Father. Second, build yourself by using the understanding the differences between Holy Spirit conviction and demonic condemnation to evaluate what to pay attention to and what to ignore. Third, believe that you deserve God’s forgiveness, as well as your own. Fourth, reconstruct your life, adding meaning by allowing God to transform your mistakes to remake them into something beautiful. And, fifth, LIVE, beloved! LIVE! By accepting the Gift of Grace, the Indescribable Gift that Jesus came and was crucified to provide. To do so, please pray the prayer in the included photo below.
Receive the Indescribable Gift of Grace
Father, thank You for the Gift of Grace that’s available because Your Son has Risen from the darkest depths of death to provide abundant everlasting life.
In this time of Your favor, I want to take this indescribable gift, and so, I confess from my heart with my mouth that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of the One and Only True and Living God. Jesus is Christ, The Messiah. I believe with my heart that He died on the Cross for my sins, and was raised to life to raise life in me. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart, live in me, help me to live in You and for You. I hand the reigns of my life to You, Jesus, making You my Lord and Savior. I repent of my sins, and so choose to turn away from all of that which displeases & grieves Your Holy Spirit. Please forgive me for my sins. And, help me when and wherever I am weak-willed, or strong in self-will, in thought or deed, to remain on the Way of Everlasting.
I bless You, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, for who You are and all that You are. Thank You for the healing, wholeness, and restoration, in my soul, spirit, and body that my becoming a New Creation in Christ, as a Child of God, will bring.
In the Mighty Name of Jesus.
No matter what you’ve done, remember God loves you! And, I love you with the love of God! As God longs to show you His compassion, I long to help you LIVE the abundant life Christ came to give to you. So, if you would like to explore claiming your gift of grace to reclaim your life on a more focused and detailed level, please Contact me for your complementary session. I’ll be very excited to start working with you!
May God Bless you in every way!
Lukeisha Carr, BCACLC
Your Biblical Life Coach, Coaching you to Live Your Abundant Life in Christ!