We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
We all know that we've been hurt. But some of us are so focused on how we've been victimized and how others have hurt us that we fail to see how we've been hurting ourselves. We may spend a lot of time and energy on trying to change how others treat us, but to no avail. Perhaps we need to begin by looking at ways we've been hurting ourselves. Then we can work on changing them.
The Bible points out many danger areas where we are likely to hurt ourselves. Here are some of them: "Stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body" (Ephesians 4:25). "Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body" (1 Corinthians 6:18). Jesus said, "Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. Give, and you will receive" (Luke 6:37-38).
God loves us every bit as much as he loves the people we've harmed. He understands the actions that cause us pain and wants to help us avoid them. We may be guaranteeing our continued pain by continuing to do things that are guaranteed to hurt us. Being willing to make amends to ourselves includes being willing to renounce and give up the behaviors that destroy our lives. As we are willing to give these things up, we'll begin to find good things coming back our way.
When we've made bad choices, we first need to make amends to ourselves.
Taken from The Life Recovery Devotional: Thirty Meditations from Scripture for Each Step in Recovery by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Copyright © 1991 by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.