A Forgiven Past
We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
We may have a hard time believing in God's forgiveness. We may think, After all I've done, I don't feel like I should expect anyone to completely forgive me. Maybe we feel that we've done such horrible things, or hurt people so badly, that there's no way our sins could ever be erased entirely. Even if we could be forgiven, who could ever forget the things we've done?
When we think of people we know—the people we've hurt—perhaps these fears are well founded. But when it comes to forgiveness from God, we need to remember that his ways are higher than man's ways. The psalmist wrote, "He [God] does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west" (Psalm 103:10-12). God has said, "Come now, let's settle this. . . . Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool" (Isaiah 1:18). "I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again" (Isaiah 43:25).
Part of our recovery is to accept complete forgiveness from God. When we come to God through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ, his forgiveness is complete. We may keep track of our failures, adding every fall to the long list we carry against ourselves. But God doesn't keep lists of our past sins; in his eyes we are clean.
Because God forgives and forgets, we need never wallow in the forgiven past.