I have this bad habit of doing stupid things, and then getting so mad at myself I hardly know what to do. It happened to me this week over something stupid. I had seen a food supplement for sale, one I’ve wondered about. Apparently there was a “special” one package free to try, and then you could keep getting it if it worked. That seemed reasonable to me, so I went ahead and did it.

Lo and behold, an $80 some dollar charge on my credit card, and a couple of Internet reviews of the manufacturer later, and I could not believe I had done this stupid idiotic thing. I will be able to cancel, but it remains unclear if I’ll get my money back. A humongous waste of money on something I just wanted to “try” and didn’t really believe would help, but if it was free…

I can point my finger at myself in a dozen different ways. I knew better, really I did. But I was tired, not thinking, curious, and just not thinking… I got sidetracked by the product’s potential promises that I later discovered really had no basis in reality and more foundation in wishful thinking.

Then I wasted more energy continuing to berate myself in my mind. Until I read a posting from a friend of mine on Facebook. She wrote, “Being caught like that means that you still have a kind and trusting nature, so be thankful that you have only lost money and not your beautiful spirit. But if you want, I will go punch them for you (wink emotcon). ”

Her comment blew me away and almost instantly I felt better. Firstly, it never once crossed my mind to blame the deceptive practice, only to blame my own folly. Secondly, such an amazing complement that made me feel better about myself and laugh at the waste of energy in being upset. Yes, the money could be better spent, but it was only money—not my soul.

I was reminded of a time I had gotten mad at myself while Rich was alive. He sat me down and told me I’d have to get over it and stop treating someone he loved so badly. I looked at him puzzled, “Who?”

He shook his head and quite seriously pointed at me, “You, I love you and I forgive you so let it go. Stop doing this to yourself.”

My guess is we all get sidetracked by the stupid things in this world. My friend’s comment, and the memory of Rich’s love remind me that those are so small next to God’s love for me. He paid the ultimate price for my guilt, knowing in advance all that I would do. When we get sidetracked by the mishaps of life we forget that we are loved and valuable in God’s eyes—valuable enough to rescue us from an eternity separated from His goodness. Valuable enough to die for me and to forgive me.

It’s about time I remember that, and learn to forgive myself. And next time I’m tempted by a deal that’s too good to be true, I’ll remember—if the offering party is not the Creator of the Universe who is utterly trustworthy—it probably isn’t true… And that makes me think of Eve: If she had followed that rule all our stories might be different.

Suddenly the self-anger dissipates, I can laugh at my foolishness, and rejoice in this: I am beloved by my God.