There’s one last excuse and that’s, “I can’t forgive myself.” Maybe you’ve never said, “I can’t forgive myself,” but you’ve thought it and you’ve lived in that mindset that your past is so bad or you’ve messed up so often that you can’t forgive yourself and you doubt that God will ever forgive you.
Living in shame and guilt from the past is so miserable. God doesn’t want you to live like that. First, you need to know that God is able and willing and waiting to forgive you whatever it is. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. That’s his promise to us. So, the first thing is to make sure you’ve confessed your sin to God with sincerity, and you’ve turned from that sin.
Then ask yourself, if God can forgive you—and he says he remembers our sin against us no more—then who are you not to forgive yourself? That cloud of guilt and shame is keeping you from enjoying God’s love and presence and peace, and it’s a trick of the enemy of our soul to rob us of the joy of forgiveness.
I remember years ago when I started recalling some sins of my past and feeling so badly about them. I started asking God again to forgive me, and so clearly I could hear his voice say to me, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” He had forgiven me, he chose to remember it no more, and so who was I to keep churning it up and living in guilt and shame.
Remember Romans 8:1: “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” No condemnation—what an incredible gift from our amazing Father-God.