Gracious God, my heart is heavy with my own failures. I try to excuse them and explain to myself why they occurred, because I want to be free from the feeling that I am unworthy and incapable of being all that I can be. But I find it easier to accept your forgiveness than to forgive myself. When I try to forgive myself, it seems I only remember and re-play my failures in my mind, and a sense of hopelessness floods over me. Help me to know that my past actions are a part of my growing humanity and that even when I fail to live up to what is your will for me, every single moment can be lived anew. Remind me that refusing to forgive myself only keeps me from experiencing that newness. Assure me of the truth that by casting “my sins into the depth of the sea” (Micah 7:19b), you have freed me to discard them myself and live the next moment as if it were my first—for indeed it is. I ask this for the sake of your love. Amen.