A Prayer to Forgive Yourself
By Sarah Coleman
“Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.” (James 3:2)
"What an idiot," I whisper in condescension to myself. "Such a loser."
I am not very kind to myself. Oh, I'm patient, compassionate and encouraging to others. I have all the tolerance in the world for others, but I'm brutal to myself.
From whom did I learn this insidious habit? None other than Satan, the father of lies. He loves to remind me of all the times I have failed. He loves to pile guilt and shame as high as the sky. But he is the father of lies and the names he calls me (and insists I call myself) are false.
So why do I listen when I have a Father who tenderly whispers the opposite?
Nowhere in the Bible do I read of God's disappointment, impatience or hatred toward me. Instead, I read His sheer delight. It's time I listened to the One who speaks truth over my soul.
The names you call yourself matter.
What sayest the tongue, so goest everything else. Your words matter. Words build or tear down, create or destroy. We all make mistakes, but if we control our words, we control everything else. You better believe they matter.
God calls us a different name.
By grace He calls us chosen (1 Peter 2:9). He calls us loved (Ephesians 1:4). He calls us delight (Isaiah 62:4). The apple of His eye (Psalm 17:8). He loves us so He carved our names on the palm of His hand (Isaiah 49:16).
Of all the people I have had to forgive, I have been the most difficult. Unforgiveness toward myself is a cancer that will eat away at my heart. I have to forgive myself in order to move forward.
The self-abuse has to stop. My voice should not curse one who has been made in the image of God.
Father, today I ask forgiveness of all the negative and harmful words I have spoken about myself. I do not want to abuse myself in such a way again. Transform my thoughts and let me understand how marvelously you made me. Change my habits so I use my tongue to speak hope and favor upon my life. In Jesus' name.
Editor’s Note: Content taken from “Why You Need to Stop Calling Yourself an Idiot” by Sarah Coleman. You can read that piece in full here. All rights reserved.