He Has Forgiven Me by Damaris Carbaugh
Lapses in judgement, ignoring advice, “doing my way,” can have devastating consequences lasting longer than one believes possible. This was the place I found myself when I first heard this reminder in song. So much was on the line. All I held dear hung in the balance. I was convinced I would not be given any grace, nor did I deserve it, because I had been warned, “Don’t do it!” And, I did it anyway. I knew the dangers. I thought I could handle it.
Unlike my children, who will tell you they always “have Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C and if we get caught it was worth it,” I do not have this attitude. I am cautious. I count the costs. I am of the opinion the consequences are not worth the momentary pleasure. But on this one occasion, I decided I needed to proceed despite the admonitions to stay clear. I found the dangers others had foreseen to be real and it was NOT worth the price paid.
I suddenly knew how Eve felt in the Garden as the taste of the fruit went from succulent and sweet to suddenly bitter with an aftertaste I could not rid myself of. Fear consumed me. I needed a place to hide. All I had believed could not happen………….happened. I had listened to the lie……….”What you want to do is the right thing to do.” (Genesis 3) Scripture had been twisted.
Unbelievably, I too was granted grace but even to this very day, the memory of this time is painful and some of the consequences ongoing. Knowing Jesus forgave me before the foundation of the world is all the more precious and the price He paid all the more personal. (Ephesians 1:4) I can literally feel my sin and guilt being flung on Him and adding to His suffering. (I Peter 2:22-24) My experience of the consequences of my decision is nothing in comparison to the price He paid for me.
The words of this song are deeply personal and verbalize exactly how I feel. They are my story and every time the Holy Spirit holds up the mirror and asks not, “Mirror, mirror on the wall….” but asks, “Whose reflection do you see?” I see another dark area of my soul Christ suffered and died to redeem. (I Corinthians 11:31)
Every time I sign the song He Has Forgiven Me, as an expression of worship I am humbled by its truth and bow in thanksgiving before His throne of mercy.
“Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe. Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow,” (Chorus of song written by Elvina M. Hall and composed by John T. Grape, in 1878) a song from my childhood comes to mind as I recall surrendering my life “Just As I Am,” at age thirteen but I am still being formed into the image of Christ. (Romans 8:29, II Corinthians 3:18)
Life is filled with trials–God planned–and temptations–God allowed–for the purpose of revealing to us who we are and to provide opportunities to encounter the God who seeks us out and invites us to receive the forgiveness He offers. Because He loves us so, it is our choice to decide whether we will receive His gift or “leave it on the table.” (Matthew 4:1-11, James 1:2-4, Ezekiel 34:16. Luke 19:10, Titus 3:3-7)
I am so very thankful for His forgiveness! Though I still must endure the consequences of my choices, I know He sees me as clean, pure, and holy. (I Corinthians 1:30, Colossians 1:22) Not because of one thing I have accomplished but because I believe Jesus is the Son of God, who was crucified, was buried, and was raised to life conquering sin and death. (Ephesians 2:8-9) I put my life in His hands! Thank you sweet Jesus for this love and mercy.
My Life is in Your Hands by Kathy Trocolli