I got booted out of my book club for bad behavior.
Okay, I wasn’t actually booted out – I chose to leave. And my behavior couldn’t have been THAT bad because not everyone noticed it. But, it was definitely a book club. And I definitely offended at least two of the women.
The details aren’t relevant (though they are juicy!). The bottom line is that I didn’t fit in and I wasn’t my best self. I carelessly flung words around and needlessly hurt people. I may have hurt them anyway – they’ve got their own issues and triggers – but I’m at least 50% responsible for the problem. Maybe even 55%.
I really am ashamed of how I behaved, and I sent them a sincere apology.
But then I kept ruminating about how “bad” I was. I got caught in a downward spiral of shame and self-condemnation. I couldn’t let it go.
Do You Keep Beating Yourself Up?
Maybe you didn’t fit in, maybe you made mistakes, maybe you were rejected. Maybe you did something you’re ashamed of and you can’t forgive yourself. Or you forgave yourself yesterday but today it’s back to haunt you.
Don’t let your past destroy this moment.
I remembered two very important things this morning while writing to God (besides the fact that He is a God of forgiveness, freedom, and love!):
- If I am fully present right now, then I can’t beat myself up for yesterday. It is over. It is finished. I don’t want to live in the past, and I refuse to drown in shame. I am forgiven, and I am free to live in this moment. And this moment is not a book club!
- I believe that everything in my life is unfolding this way for a reason. I trust God, and I believe He is working together all things not only for my good, but for the good of others. Things happen on purpose. My job isn’t to figure out why; my job is to live and learn.
Put those two things together: living in the present and embracing life fully. You’ll find no room for shame, guilt, or self-condemnation.
Stop beating yourself up. If your thoughts aren’t filling you with peace, joy, and power then you need to change what you think about. How? Write about the pain you feel or the bad thing you did. Tell God how sad, ashamed, and sorry you are. Accept His forgiveness, delight in His freedom, soak up His joy!
Then accept your past for what it is and live fully in this moment. You don’t need to carry the burden anymore.
It’s not easy, but it is simple.
Blessings and Blossoms,
You are priceless, unique, and deeply loved. Your value is far greater than you will ever know.
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