What to Do When You Can’t Forgive Yourself

    Sometimes as believers, we have a hard time realizing God forgives us, and we can even struggle with forgiving ourselves. There are different areas of forgiveness: one being forgiving others, next is forgiving ourselves and, last but not least, realizing God forgives you when you truly repent. Obviously, there is no excuse for habitual sin, but God is merciful, and once we repent (running from sin) and genuinely ask for forgiveness, God says He cleanses us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Yes, we all fall short daily and need to renew our minds in God’s Holy Word, but He doesn’t want us living in despair, condemnation or continually rehearsing the past.


    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

    …for ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)


    We also need to walk in the authority God has bestowed upon us regarding freedom from sin and condemnation (John 3:17). Satan is the accuser of the brethren and of the church. Sometimes we are harder on ourselves than God is. Yes, sin is serious and there are consequences, but we need to give it to Jesus and literally turn from the areas of temptation. We need to quit rehearsing and repeating the past, only harming and damaging our self-worth and identity. We need to walk in the identity of the royalty as daughters of the King.


    But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light… (1 Peter 2:9)

    As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. (Psalm 103:12)


    God says in His Holy Word that when we ask for forgiveness, He removes our sins as far as the east is from the west! That is a long distance! Wow, God loves us so much! Praise Jesus for His mercy, grace and constant love for us.

    Question for you: If you are a believer in Jesus as your Lord and Savior, and you believe God the Father sent His Son so you could be in relation to a Holy God and He took your place, why won’t you forgive yourself? We can all ponder this for a moment.

    Try this: Stop, pray, ask God to forgive you for your sins and speak out loud, “I declare in Jesus’ name that I am free from sin, shame and guilt, and I forgive myself and receive the forgiveness through the blood of Jesus on the cross. Amen.”

    When we realize the magnitude of the love of the Father, we can’t help but be overwhelmed by His mercy and love. No, this isn’t a license to sin and do whatever and then ask for forgiveness. No, we need to live a life of worship that honors God. The reality is we are all human and are bound to make mistakes. The good news is we can walk in freedom and victory! Jesus paid it all! It is finished! (John 19:30)


    If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. (John 8:36)


    Jesus also mentions that He came to die for the sick, broken sinners who need a savior—not the religious, proud and self-righteous who claim to not need healing.


    Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32)


    Why do we need freedom from holding onto past sin and regret? Why do we need to walk in God’s forgiveness? We don’t want to be bound by the past because it can affect our walk and become a distraction (Hebrews 12:1). Yes, we need to have a contrite spirit and a broken heart pertaining to sin, but we need to get up and move past it, amen? His mercies are NEW every morning! (Lamentations 3) God is faithful! Let’s rehearse the truth, not the past!


    No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead… (Philippians 3:13)

    Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us… (Hebrews 12:1)


    The Lord wants us to walk in His freedom, not only because He set us free by paying a high price in love for your salvation, but also He wants you to forgive yourself, precious daughter of The Lord! It says in the Bible when we ask God to forgive our sins through His Son Jesus’ blood on the cross, and who died and rose again on the third day, we will have new life in Him. God places our sins in the deepest ocean and remembers our sins no more! Wow!!!


    You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea. (Micah 7:19)


    We will slip and fall, but we become a new creation and have a fresh start with God—how amazing is that! That is why the song “Amazing Grace” is so powerful; we can all relate who believe in Christ: “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see.” Wow! I am humbled beyond words. I love being in a contrite, repentant place, but also love experiencing the peace and freedom through my Heavenly Father.

    Friends, do YOU have this peace? If you don’t, say this prayer: “Father, I ask for you to come into my life. I ask that your Son Jesus comes into my heart and is Lord of my life for the rest of my days on earth. Please send your Holy Spirit to guide me and to help me to honor you in Jesus’ name, amen!”

    Does it help to understand why we need to forgive ourselves so we aren’t carrying heavy burdens that Jesus carried for us?

    I am praying for you girls. If you have further questions, message me at or comment below! God bless you! 

    Christi Given
    Christi Given
    Christi Given is a former Trinity Broadcasting Network host for the JUCE TV NETWORK, and has been featured on the Hillsong Channel. Her passion is to reach the youth with the Gospel and her music. Given has been writing for Project Inspired since 2011, and hopes to encourage the younger generation in their faith.


    1. Thank you so much for this! I know a friend who needs to hear this. They’re having a hard time forgiving themselves and I’ve been struggling with what to tell them! I’m excited to share this with them!

    2. I love that these articles cite Scripture even if it’s a paraphrase. I enjoy the actual Scriptures that are inserted as well! God’s Word is soooo life changing and full of truth people need to see and read it for themselves. These articles do that!

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