Western Cape, South Africa

+27 72 615 9417

Support during business hours

Forgive Yourself | Anel Conradie

It is the end of the year.  Christmas decorations are going up.  Lights and beautiful bells shine bright. But somewhere, in my silent night, my broken heart cries a song. And today I hope you hear me.

I am a single mother of three beautiful children. I was and I am still blessed. Unfortunately, our “perfect” family was torn apart by so many small jackals that ruined the whole grapevine. But that is another story in itself. I catch myself thinking of the holidays. How it used to be growing up. Family around the tree. Lots of cousins, grandma’s,uncles and aunts. How it used to be while being married. Preparing, planning and excitement. So much love, acceptance and belonging.

Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi:

I think back about the choices I have made. We are free to choose, but we are not free from the responsibility for the results of our choices.  I replay the choices. The reasons for my choices (and the absence of reasons) sometimes.  I get upset chasing my younger self around the table to accuse her.  To accuse her for letting “us” down. For letting her children down. For letting her husband down. For letting her King down.  For focusing on so many irrelevant things and making it bigger than it actually was. And allowing it to kill, steal and destroy more than I should have.  “You should have known better, little Me!!”  “How could you let this happen?”.  The accusations increase. The enemy enjoys, and capitalizes, on the way we are convicting (and condemning) ourselves. We actually take the enemies job upon ourselves of reminding us how incompetent we were. And we help him to make ourselves feel condemned. Oh my. Even to the extent that we do not like ourselves.

Darling, have grace for yourself.  Just remember how scared you were in those difficult times. How alone and lonely you felt. I remember a time when all I focused on was getting through one minute, when an hour seemed to be too much of a challenge. To remind myself to breath when I felt emotionally to tired to breath. To appreciate the small gains.  To not think back on how much time I should have and could have spent doing something else like spend more time with the children? Investing time in them rather than working and even going to church? 

Remind yourself of how much more you know now if you look at the situation from the other side. You did the best you could with what you had and knew. Forgive yourself for not having the maturity you have now to have made other choices.  You are always becoming and growing. You were not created in “mature” form and that is where the growing must happen. And this is exactly what the journey is for. That is why life is not about the goal at the end. It is about the journey.  That is why we will always doubt and judge ourselves if you see the situation in reverse. Remember, you did not know then what you know now.

My first step towards becoming free and liberated to live my best life was realizing this.  When I let go of the guilt that I felt for disappointing myself mostly. It is a guilt that keeps on giving if you do not stop it before it consumes you. So, I had to stop bowing my humiliated head to accept a sash marked Unforgiveable, and learn to perceive and present myself as unworthy and alone.

When shame washes over me, I think of Jesus’s blood cleansing me, when memories haunt me,  I remember the freedom that Jesus bled to buy me – a real death bringing real forgiveness and real newness of life. There is no condemnation for me (and you) as you stand in the full, perfection of Jesus’s life and work.

I am known, seen and loved. 

““Forgive yourself for not knowing what you didn’t know before you learned it.” – Maya Angelou”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *