Have you ever felt like you have made one too many mistakes for God to love you or forgive you? May be you are currently facing depression or are on the verge of a mental breakdown because of a past disappointments and you just can’t quite forgive yourself. I have been there!
During my adolescent years, I was a late bloomer. Everyone else seemed to hit their growth spurt earlier than I did, which made me think, “What is wrong with me?” When I was 16 years old, I was a whopping 5’3” tall and weighed an impressive 95 lbs. in wet clothes (Today I am 5’11” and 160 lbs.)! One of the hardest things for me to deal with at that time was the fact my voice had not deepened yet. It caused me to develop deep insecurities in the way I viewed myself and these thoughts lasted for many years after. I hated talking on the phone or in front of people because I was so concerned with what people thought of me. As if that wasn’t enough for a young guy to deal with, I was molested by a friend in those key developmental years which added to the anxiety and confusion I faced. I kept asking myself, “Why me!! Why am I the one always having to go through this stuff?”
I wrestled through these issues in high school and managed to make my way into college, however, these wounds were never healed…only masked. Deep on the inside of my heart, I thought I was better than others. I never would have admitted it, but I judged people. One day in college, I started experiencing homosexual thoughts and even gave into those perverted desires. Honestly, I went into denial…this could not possibly be happening to me. I was able to cope with the other issue in my past, but this was the hair that broke the camel’s back. I did not know what to do or where to turn! Eventually, I cried out to God with everything in me for His divine help and over time, He answered my call. One day as I was overwhelmed with shame and guilt for my wrong doing, God revealed the meaning of a verse in the Bible I read a thousand times, but never grasped its significance. The Bible says, “Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous– with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the poor in spirit (the humble, who rate themselves insignificant), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:3 AMP)! God calls people blessed when they recognize they are poor and having nothing to offer God. In other words, they don’t have the ability to earn their way into Heaven. Up until this point, I thought I deserved Heaven deep on the inside of my heart and God resisted my pride and arrogance! He allowed me to fall flat on my face until “Humpty Dumpty” couldn’t put himself back together again. He proved to me once and for all that I was not good and that I was definitely not better than anyone else. I realized for the first time what real grace was all about. I did not deserve God’s mercy, but I could receive it freely! God flooded my heart with His love and I understood a huge lesson that day – God loved me and He sent His Son to die so that I could be set free from sin and its power over me! I was loved and valued by God and I could experience His love because of what Christ did for me!
The woman caught in adultery was brought before Jesus by her accusers and they wanted to stone her in front of Him. Jesus said to them, “He without sin cast the first stone.” All walked away ashamed. This woman became a radical follower of Jesus Christ from that day forward because she understood what real grace was in the depth of her being.
Just like this woman, I finally grasped what Jesus did for me. He extended me mercy when I deserved judgment. Over the last 12 years, God has been healing me and making me whole as I grow in my understanding of Him. He has brought me to a place where I can confidently share the good work He has done in me and I anxiously wait to extend mercy to people because I have experienced His mercy and loving touch. The Bible says, “Therefore I tell you, her sins, many [as they are], are forgiven her–because she has loved much. But he who is forgiven little loves little.” When we understand the depth of our own sinfulness and what Christ really did for us, we are compelled to love others.
In my darkest hour, I felt like such “trash”, but God redeemed me and made me into treasure of gold. He took my shattered life and made something beautiful – something that could reflect Jesus Christ. Today, I am sharing my testimony all over the world what God has done in me and offering hope to others.
Do you feel like you could not be loved because of your sin or past mistakes? Or maybe you are in the midst of the biggest failure of your life. I have good news. God loves you right where you are and wants to forgive you. You can’t earn His grace and you don’t deserve it, but you can receive it freely by faith. Ask God to forgive you of your sin and invite Him into your life by faith. Stand on the trustworthiness of His Word. He will remove your sin as far as the east is from the west. He is the Great Physician and can heal you of any past wounds and failure! God is an expert at redeeming lives and making something out of nothing!
He did it for me and will do it for you. The choice is yours! Let Him take your trash and make it into a treasure of great value!