At times, when you have a heavy past it feels as if it is stuck on you. Like a stain that refuses to wash off. You can get most of it off, but a small spot will always remain.
I fear a lot of things. When starting a new relationship, will the tiny fragments of dysfunction that still remain inside of me come out every once and a while? Because that’s all I know. All I’ve ever experienced is dysfunction. How do I truly know that I could nourish and sustain a real, healthy relationship? Will my past experiences spill out and forever leave a stain, no longer making it pure? Will I be seen as damaged goods? All of these are doubts and insecurities I still feel and have. I feel dirty, and that I could never be clean.
Frequently I battle with feelings of inadequacy. Then, I was reading over a scripture that reminded me that despite my feelings of impurity, there is something, or someone who can make me feel clean, and that’s God. In the chapter of Ezekiel God talks about bringing redemption to Israel. He makes promises to them about bringing them back to their own land. He goes on to explain to the people about forgiving them of their sins and making them new again. “I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.” (Ezekiel 36:25-26)
How gratifying is that? To know that there is a God who can rid you of your sins and your impurities. He doesn’t only heal your broken heart, He actually gives you a new one! A chance to start over and to erase the ugly past that has stained your heart. Those stains finally do come out! The most rewarding thing for me though, is knowing that He has cleansed me. Just the mere utter of the words “clean” and “pure” are immensely satisfying. Being cleaned when on the inside you have felt dirty and broken is the best feeling in the world. That’s what Christ does for us. Those sins and those mistakes are completely forgotten! Vanished! They don’t exist! They never happened! God sees you as a brand new person when you give your heart to Him.
I know it is easier said that done to completely forget about the stains that once existed in your life. I still struggle to this day about feeling damaged. I doubt myself and I even doubt God sometimes. But then when I read this chapter in Ezekiel, and especially those two verses, I am reminded of how great my God is and how merciful He is. When I speak to Him I tell Him that I’m sorry for the things that I’ve done, and his response is that I am someone that He can never forget. He reminds me of how much He loves me and How important I am to Him because of the deep relationship we have.
When you feel low, I encourage you to stop and speak to God about how you’re feeling. I promise you that He will reassure you and help you realize your incredible strength. Also, underline and mark Ezekiel 36 in your bible. Let it be a reminder to you that you were made clean again.
Also, something that has put my thoughts into words so beautifully is a song by Taylor Swift that is very fittingly called “Clean”. This song is where I have gotten quotes in this post from. This song is near and dear to my heart. She once beautifully said, “mistakes don’t make you damaged, they make you clean.” -Taylor Swift.
And that is about as perfect of words that anyone can ever say.