There’s a reason ‘Mean Girls’ was such a successful film. We can all relate in some way to the cringe-worthy moments from Caddy Heron’s high school experience.
I can recall my pre-teen and teen years when I was on the receiving end of cruel phone calls, harsh MSN messages, etc. Once, in grade 9, another student snorted like a pig and called me fat. This left a greater impact then I would like to admit; as a result I started down a path of obsessive dieting, self-hatred, and self-harm. When someone hurts you, it’s like a part of you rises up inside and says, “that’s never going to happen again!” Well that’s what I did! I decided that if anyone was going to hurt me it would be me, or I would hurt them first. My words became harsh like a weapon, and the next thing I knew, I was the mean girl.
It wasn’t until many years later, when Jesus reminded me of that moment in grade 9, when I realized just how much unforgiveness I was holding onto. I felt the pain of that moment like it was fresh, an open wound available for anyone to trigger.
Finally, I made a choice to forgive the guy who bullied me, which wasn’t easy, but I was so tired of holding onto the pain. I needed to apply that same forgiveness to my own life, for where I walked after that moment; for the self destruction, addictions, and many sinful choices. I had asked Jesus for forgiveness, but I had not truly received it, feeling as though that part of my life was an embarrassing train wreck and I “should have known better”. Gentle friends reminded me that Jesus died for all of me, not just the good parts, and that hating who I was back then, made me no different from that bully.
Releasing myself into forgiveness and allowing Jesus’ forgiveness to saturate my own heart was some of the greatest freedom I have ever felt. Jesus gave it all for me, and now I can extend that same undeserved forgiveness to others!