There’s nothing more disappointing than spending your hard-earned money watching a bad movie. You know the one. You keep sitting there, moment by moment, hoping that it will take an exciting spin and make it all worthwhile, but it never happens! You walk out of the theater feeling robbed of your time and your money.
I’ve watched more movies like that over the years than I would care to mention. However, my top picks this year have never been shown at the box office. These vivid documentaries have showcased in the hidden theater of my mind starring "ME." Titles include: Keeley's Ultimate Failures, Keeley's Hilarious Shortcomings, and Keeley's Monumentally Bad Decisions.
Revelation 12:10 says that Satan is the “accuser of the brethren.” Ron Howard or Steven Spielberg couldn’t hold a candle to the directorship of the devil. He could win Oscars with his artful mastery to detail and sobering special effects. Each frame is crafted to remind you of how pathetic you are. His movies don’t win awards though. They cripple your heart.
Romans 3:23 says “For ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”
If you’re human, you’ve missed it and probably missed it a whole lot. I completely understood that and had no problem forgiving others for their mistakes. When it came to me, I had a hard time letting myself off that easily. Making myself "pay" by constant guilt, condemnation, and yes, watching those hideous movies over and over again seemed to be a fair penance for my wrong doings!
Mark 11:24-25 says “What things you desire when you pray, believe that you receive them and you shall have them. And when you stand praying, FORGIVE, if you have ought against any, that your Father in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
The qualifier in successfully communicating with God in prayer is FORGIVENESS. Unforgiveness HINDERS your prayers. It creates a barrier between you and God.
Did you ever think that the person you were holding out on was YOURSELF? It’s just as wrong not to forgive yourself and to harbor ill will and animosity against yourself as it is not to forgive someone else. If you continually meditate on “I’m such a failure, I’ve made such a mess of my life, I'm not a good parent, Why did I make that financial decision, Why did I say that to that person, I'll never amount to anything worthwhile, etc” you’ll have a very hard time breaking free from the past and allowing God to bring blessing into your life.
Isaiah 43:25 says “I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again.”
When we ask God to forgive us of our sins, not only does he blot them out, he doesn’t even remember them anymore! If God himself doesn’t even think about our sins again, why on earth do we beat ourselves up playing them over and over again in our heads? It is useless!
So, I have found it best to put my past mistakes where they belong – not just behind me, but abolished and destroyed, never to be remembered. I ask God to forgive me, ask others to forgive me, and I forgive MYSELF. If Satan’s movies start to play, I’m not going to get the popcorn and take a seat. I will just say “No devil, I’m not watching that anymore. I’ve been forgiven and I refuse to be crippled by that situation any longer. Now get out of here, in Jesus name.” It almost sounds too simple but that’s God for you. He does all the hard work and we just do the trusting.
Are YOU ready for the best year yet? I truly believe 2011 will be an exciting turning point! Forgive others AND forgive yourself, and see what God will do!