“You are forgiven “I heard from the emphatic pastor’s voice that blared over the Uber’s radio. “I felt that in my spirit; I needed to hear that” I thought. Although my friends tried their hardest to remind me of God’s promise to forgive us, it just wasn’t enough.
I read through countless scriptures “he throws our sins into a sea of forgetfulness”, and prayed “Lord, forgive me” but it hadn’t been enough until I felt those words that morning.
I am forgiven.
I am forgiven.
For a week, I walked around with a cloud of shame and disappointment hanging over me because I did some thing that I wish I hadn’t. I wish things hadn’t gone that far, I wish I had more self-control; but hey, you can’t un-live your mistakes. Conviction is good right? It shows us that the Holy Spirit really does reside in you. I don’t want to be like the ones that God gave away to a reprobate mind!
“Furthermore, since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, He gave them up to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done.” Romans 1:28
In a recent IGTV video , I made mention that we sin in our hearts before we commit the actual act. The heart is deceitful above all things. I remember the first and last time I broke my vow of celibacy; I didn’t fall into a trap (it was premeditated). Now here’s the thing about God, He always gives us a way out; whether we take it or not is really up to us. Before I went clubbing that night, about 3-4 years ago, I had a very strong inclination that I should not go. But like we alwaysssss do, I ignored the signs. So I met a guy and the story goes – I broke my vow. After allowing myself to fall into temptation, that time, I realized these three things:
Boundaries are necessary.
I don’t know how much I can stress the importance of them. It is essential for me to set up boundaries because , when in the moment of temptation, I will fall. I have boundaries and a lot of discipline but self-control is an area I am still working on; I have to be honest with myself. Setting boundaries is what I do to resist falling into sin.
“I’d like to use a lifeline”, “Which one would you like to use?”, “can I phone a friend?”
Get Accountability Partners.
Accountability partners are so necessary when trying to date God’s way. I used to think accountability partners were only there to help with maintaining my celibacy but I realized they were purposed for so much more. They are there to remind you of who you are in Christ and keep you focused on the end goal: mine is marriage. They are also there to say: “Sis, he ain’t the one”.
Do Not Ignore the Fruit.
Here’s another thing I learned: Don’t ignore the fruit! The word of God says you will know them by their fruit. I was thinking a lot about this the other day. I understand some of us may lack in the area of discernment but if you open your eyes, you see what’s right in front of you; you will never be led astray. Am I at liberty to say this? We are never bamboozled; we just ignore the fruit (the signs and the red flags). What are those obvious things that show you he isn’t the one sis?
Just for reference’s sake, the fruit of the Spirit are: Charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity (kindness), goodness, longanimity (generosity), mildness (gentleness), faith, modesty, continency (self-control), and chastity.
He doesn’t believe in celibacy? He doesn’t have self-control sis!
He gets drunk every weekend with his friends? He lacks self-control sis.
He is a man after God’s own heart but he doesn’t have a kind bone in his body; something doesn’t sound right sis.
He has anger issues.
He lacks patience.
What other kind of fruit is he bearing? Drama? Is he always at odds with people? Is it always someone else’s fault? He isn’t accountable.
Is he giving of his time?
Does he lack integrity? Is he saying one thing and doing another?
Is he flaky?
How does he treat other people? His family and friends? Does he have friends? What are his friends like (fruit)?
Does he know more than two scriptures sis?
How is he known in his community?
Can he lead?
These are some of the questions we can begin to ask ourselves when we believe that God has sent him. If we don’t look at these things AND act on what we see, we will find ourselves wrapped up in situations we really don’t need to be in; things we CAN avoid. It’s much easier to cut things off before they start.
And the final thing I learned which was very revelatory for me was this: GUARD YOUR HEART. This revelation was an answer to my: “why do I keep ending up in the same situations?” prayer. “You don’t guard your heart”, God spoke. You are a prized possession and so is your heart; everyone doesn’t deserve access to it!
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.Proverbs 4:23
Repeat after me “everyone doesn’t deserve me”.
In the Bible, there are people called guardsmen and their role was to guard the city gates because inside the gates were valuables; sis, you’re valuable. The guards had to be alert at all times; they weren’t letting anything suspicious get pass them, they weren’t ignoring the signs.
Along with guarding your heart, stop letting people have access to you!
Cut off ties and make it clear.
“Our communication stops here.”
“This relationship is not benefiting us and it needs to end.”
“We have different ideas of what a relationship is and because of that, we shouldn’t go any further; this is where our communication ends.”
“You don’t respect me or my boundaries and because of that, it’s best that we end this.”
I don’t know how God will lead you in conversation to end things that no longer serve you; I just pray that you do.
I pray that you re-open your eyes.
So with that, my prayer for you is :
You will stop letting toxic people have access to you. I pray that above everything, you will make guarding your heart your number one priority. I pray that you will see your value like God sees your value; you are wonderfully made. I pray you will stop settling for things that are unfavorable for you. I pray that not only will your discernment will increase so you can see who’s not for you but also; you’re strengthened to leave when it’s time to! I pray that in this moment, the Lord Jesus Christ will cut off toxic people and things attached to you that are not from Him. I plead the blood of Jesus over every relationship and connection. May you live a life that is pleasing to God and may you be connected to people who mean you well. In Jesus’ name.