Without confidence in the stubborn love of the Father and the over-ample sacrifice of Jesus I’d sink in the quicksand of my self-reproach. He sees my heart of repentance, hears the sincerity of my confession, takes a good long gaze into the eyes of his Son at his right hand, and assures me that the entire record of my failures is deleted and replaced by the record of Jesus.
When the snake comes to accuse me of previously confessed failures, I tell him to talk to Jesus about it and to slither back into the hole from which he came.
The extent to which I’m able to forgive others is the extent to which I’m able to take it for myself – and vise versa. Giving and receiving forgiveness are twin qualities. In order to “adopt” the one I have to take the other.
– Originally published in The Other End of the Dark: A Memoir About Divorce, Cancer, and Things God Does Anyway (the profits of which go to Freedom House).