Self-hatred for real or imagined failures begets crippling guilt and is spawned by the father of lies. It thwarts God's plan for our existence, our personal standing in the world. When we scorn ourselves and say, "I'm a born loser, a fraud, a hypocrite," then we scorn the divine plan - scorn all the dreams God would realize through us, all the joy he anticipates from us, and all the hope he has placed in us
...The wisdom of tenderness allows us to love our whole life story and know that we've been graced and made beautiful by the providence of our past history. "even from my sins," wrote Augustine of Hippo, "God has drawn good." All the wrong turns in the past, the detours, the mistakes, the moral lapses - everything that's irrevocably ugly or painful melts and dissolves in the light of accepted tenderness. As Australian theologian Kevin O'Shea remarks, "One rejoices in being unafraid to be open to the healing presence, no matter what one might be or might have done."