Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. (II Cor. 7:10)
Peter was once filled with regret and sadness, leaving him lost and downcast. But after being encouraged and challenged by the resurrected Jesus, Peter was able to recommit himself to Christ and dedicated his life to the Lord and to ministering to God’s people.
I had an experience similar to Peter’s. I was once lost and depressed, questioning and blaming God for my misfortune. God approached me consistently with a soft and gentle voice, asking me, “Why don’t you first examine yourself?” I was frightened because I knew who was talking to me and what He was trying to say. I took out a pen and paper, knelt down before the Lord in tears, and wrote down all the sins and guilt that I had yet to confess. I once again renewed my determination to repent and follow my Lord. I was immediately filled with peace and the joy of being forgiven. My relationship with God was thoroughly restored because of Jesus’ love as displayed on the cross. I know I can overcome sin and temptation with the resurrection power of Jesus.
God longs for an intimate relationship with us. Sin always gets in the way to cut off our connection with God. Constantly examining ourselves and dealing with sins will turn our guilt, sadness and isolation into true freedom in Christ. The Holy Spirit cleanses us by revealing to us our sins and transgressions; at the same time He also intercedes for us and strengthens us with His power and mercy. By the grace of God, may we be free from the bondage of our sins so that we can seek a deeper and more intimate relationship with Him.
- When was the last time you examined your spiritual well-being?
- How can you find a breakthrough in your relationship with God?
- What are the specific steps that you will take to examine yourself and humble yourself in your walk with God?
Written by Judd Hu. Artwork by Carol Li