Q: I’m so ashamed of some of the things I’ve done that I can’t even imagine telling God about them. I’d be so embarrassed. I guess that means God will never forgive me, although I don’t think he’d forgive me anyway. — K.R.
A: When you were a child and broke something valuable, did you eagerly run and tell your mother? I doubt it — not only because you were ashamed of what you’d done and knew it would upset her, but because you were afraid she might punish you.
But God isn’t like this! Yes, when we do something wrong he feels it very deeply, but the reason is because he loves us, and he knows that we are only hurting ourselves (and also others) when we sin. Let me be clear: God hates sin, and he hates it when we sin. But the main reason is because sin separates us from him, and he knows how deeply we damage our lives and our souls when we sin. No wonder the Bible compares sin to a forest fire that destroys everything in its path (see James 3:5-6).
But listen: God knows all about your past, and there is nothing — absolutely nothing — you can confess to him that he doesn’t already know. And yet he still loves you! The proof is that Jesus Christ gave his life for your salvation. The Bible says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
Don’t carry your burden of sin any longer. Instead, turn to God and confess to him your sins and your need for his forgiveness. Jesus’ words are for you: “Neither do I condemn you. … Go now and leave your life of sin” (John 8:11).
Write to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or visit www.billygraham.org.