Most books and articles you read on forgiveness cover the aspect of our need to forgive. It is true that if we don’t, then resentment, bitterness, and a lack of forgiveness will do us greater harm than those we need to forgive. But there is another side to the coin. We also need to receive forgiveness.
There are times we need to receive forgiveness from others as well as forgiveness from God. Then of course, sometimes we find it difficult to forgive ourselves.
We must always accept forgiveness from others as genuine and not simply perfunctory. Likewise we must consciously accept the forgiveness God offers.
Just a St Paul had problems when he found himself doing what he did not want to do, so we too go through the battle with temptation. When we lose that battle, fortunately God does not categorize sin. If we are dishonest, steal or just act inappropriately, then it is all on the same level. It is we who compartmentalize our wrongdoing. It is all the same to God.
I believe God completely understands our weaknesses and he certainly understands our human nature. He simply calls us to confession and offers us unconditional forgiveness. Not that we can sin with impunity but that when we slip or fall, he is faithful as his Word says and offers reconciliation and repair of the relationship.
We can take some comfort from David who committed adultery, then arranged for the murder of Uriah the husband, yet we read his sincere confession in Psalm 51 and ultimately see God’s blessing upon his life. Samuel said that David had been chosen because he was a man after God’s own heart.
If you need forgiveness today then take heart, be encouraged because God’s forgiveness is just as real and available for you as it was for David.