No More Self-Condemnation
This is my last post of the series I started a few weeks ago. All of these points have been significant in finding healing and freedom from strongholds in my life, but I would have to say this one in particular has been one of the most important pieces for me.
Condemnation is a subject I have repeatedly had to deal with over the last several years. While preparing to write this post, I started looking through many of my previous posts. I saw the words “condemnation” and “self-condemnation” written time and time again. One of the major components in me finding freedom and healing (emotional and spiritual) was learning how to not condemn myself.
Many of us have heard or read the following scripture:
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1)
Many of us have heard this before, but how many still condemn ourselves when we don’t meet our own standards or the standards of those around us? This has been a huge one for me, because I unfortunately did a very good job condemning myself over the years. Satan didn’t even need to help. I did a good enough job of it on my own. This is not only harmful and unfruitful, but it will keep you trapped even longer.
Please do not condemn yourself when you fall or don’t do everything perfectly.
Let’s look at a few scriptures that come just before the one I mentioned above:
“So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin” (Romans 7:21-25).
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1)
This is a perfect example of the war that can rage inside of each one of us. We often want to do one thing but end up doing another, but “thanks be to God, who delivers (us) through Jesus Christ our Lord!”
In all of the self-condemning I have done, guess what never happened as a result? It never set me free. Condemning myself never made me “get it” enough to not fall or do everything perfectly. Actually, the opposite happened. After a long time, I started to notice this self-condemnation backfiring on me. It was causing me to feel helpless, hopeless and like a failure.
Condemnation will never set you free.
Jesus knows condemnation will not set us free. If He is not condemning us, then why is it ok to do this to ourselves? Condemnation is a tactic of the enemy, so it can never set us free. When I started making a very conscious effort to stop condemning myself, I became acutely aware of just how often I was doing it. I also felt guilty for awhile, feeling like I was trying to get away with something if I didn’t beat myself up over my sin/failure/mistakes.
As I gradually started walking in the grace available for me, I began to see life emerging where I once only saw condemnation.
When we give our lives to Christ, He never expects us to do everything perfectly. He knows we have flaws, and He fully knows our weaknesses. As you yield your life to Him over and over again, and as you put your focus on Him, you slowly become more like Him. This is a lifelong process. He has given us His grace to overcome. This does not mean we will never sin again, but that we have been given power (through Him) to overcome any stronghold we are dealing with. This same grace is available for us when we sin, giving us the power to get back up and put our focus on Christ again.
The Holy Spirit will certainly convict us when we need to change something, but that is far different than condemnation.
- The next time you find yourself listening to the condemning voice in your head, pray that God would show you His perspective on the situation. If there is something you need to do/stop doing He will show you and give you the grace to change.
- It is not a sin to be tempted. Jesus was tempted, so we know it is not a sin. What we do with that temptation is what matters. Keep this in mind, because feeling guilty for being tempted will just provoke you to fall even quicker.
- If what you are hearing is purely condemnation from the enemy, I pray that you recognize it for what it is and replace those lies with God’s truth of who you are in Him.
I have been condemning myself for many,many years Amy, especially over one incident. When I read your blog it really hit me right in my gut. I thought ,oh my God this is me. I just broke down and now I am crying my heart out. I knew that God forgave me, but I have never been able to forgive myself until now. I am so thankful that God is using you for his vessel the way he is. I love you Amy Riordan, my wonderful, sweet, precious daughter in law. Please excuse all my grammatical mistakes.
I am so glad the Lord put you in my life. 🙂 Thank you for sharing this, Dawn. I love how God works!
I needed to hear this. Sometimes the enemy try to make me think everything is my fault with a former induvidual. I know i was not perfect within it. You know people try to make you look bad when you yield temptation. I had been not touched by a man in about 12 years but i was placed around a man that i use to date and slipped into temptation. God has spoken to this Young man even before this happened and told him i was his wife but to this day he has not yey asked me to marry him. Now keep in mind we were together before i got to know the lord. Its been 15 years
Im here in the state of tennessee where he lives because God sent the ministry that im in to this state. He is in a relationship and living with a woman that he has not married to and i ask God why is this picture painted before me? Yes it hurts because God has spoke to prophets and they have said they see me marrying him. How do i receive this. Now the one thing i know is that he drinks alcohol and maybe this is why. He still do things that are not of God. Please email me.
Hi! I know this is several years later, but in the case of waiting around for a guy that is disobeying God’s will, it’s better for you to move on. I, too, faced a similar situation. I asked God for a husband and He sent this man, who seemed great on the outside. However, the man changed in a blink of an eye and is now a heavy drinker, smoker, and he had sex with alot of other females while God was supposed to be setting us up. Ugh, it was so heartbreaking. The guy and I spoke alot and he told me he loved me, but then went off and made fun of me for telling him of what God told me. He also slept with more girls and wanted to have sexual fun instead of listening to God in dating/marrying me. This all happened last year and I’m just now healing from the effects of it all. I was so mad at God for saying I had to marry this man and the Devil was right there planting hatred in my heart for the man and God. It was awful. But thanks be to God, that Jesus didn’t let me stay in the Devil’s trap. I was constantly condemning myself over the man in ways I can’t explain, and I was always angry with God for thinking He wanted me with that bad-hearted guy. Yet, Jesus knew the guy had changed and He wanted me to move on earlier. But the Devil kept me in a trapped mindset of trying to fight for that man, who chose the Devil over God. That’s where the anger came in. But just last week, Jesus showed me the physical light. He told me that He’s not condemning nor am I obligated to marry that sexual immoral and unethical man. Gosh, the amount of stuff that supposed husband did to me was awful. I just thank God that I’m not wasting any more time praying for the man nor trying to win over his harden heart. Plus, me and Jesus are closer than ever now. The man never did come around no matter how many times I spoke to him or God spoke to him. So, if you’re still dealing with the situation, I want to personally let you know that it’s time to move on. The man doesn’t love you nor respect you and you are probably one of the best kinds of girls in the world. Faithful, God-fearing, and strong-willed. It takes guts to wait for a man that God says is right. But people change and it takes more guts to let go of the man that isn’t seeing you as Jesus does. And this message isn’t just for you, but for anyone else struggling with this area. Ugh, I remember so many nights of tears because the guy wouldn’t text me back until days laters or not at all because I was told he was nervous around me. Yet, he effortlessly picked up meaningless girls. And I would get these dreams to confirm God’s will, but the man never came around and I began to hate the man for messing up my walk with God. And I would hear voices that I assumed were from the Holy Spirit, in which i was told to call the man. When I did, I got disrespected by his friends or the guy hung up on me. My soul took a massive beating from that man and it confused my walk with God. But now I am wiser and know it was the Devil saying those words. He does disguise himself as an angel from time to time. What a monster. Anyway, I finally decided to move on when I found out the truth from Jesus and that the man was dating yet another girl and bragging about how happy he was with her to hurt my feelings. But God broke them up and now he is in pain for choosing the wrong path, while I am getting better everyday and enjoying a fullfilling love life with Jesus. There is even a new love interest in my path, who actually respects me and answer my texts, phone calls, and enjoys my company. So, if the first guy isn’t working out now, a new guy will once you let go of the man that God might no longer see worthy of your love.