“For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation…” 2 Cor. 7:10a; NASB
In his book “Mere Christianity”, C. S. Lewis wrote: “No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good.” This is especially true when we measure our thoughts, our words, and our deeds, against what the Bible tells us God considers good. The depth of our sin is immeasurable. One reason we get humbler as we grow closer to God is we become more aware of our sinful nature. The more we acknowledge our sin, the more aware we are of what Jesus accomplished on the cross. Think about it, had Jesus not died on that cross and lived to ascend to the Father, you, me, and everyone else would spend eternity in hell.
We are in the season of Lent. Lent is a period of 40 days prior to Easter where Christians are encouraged to spend extra time in prayerful reflection and preparation for the celebration of Resurrection Day (Easter Sunday). During this time some people choose to fast, some spend extra time in prayer, and some do both. Actually, fasting, when done properly, is doing both. (Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness fasting and praying to prepare for His ministry on earth, see Matt. 4 & Luke 4). Reflecting on the horrible death that Jesus experienced for our sins will help you into a deeper sense of gratitude. It was for our sins that He paid that price, not His.
In the passage above we see that Godly sorrow brings a repentance that is without regret. To repent means to “turn away” from your old ways. You may have already dealt with the big stuff and feel as though you’re good. Through prayerful reflection you will see some hidden areas of your life that need to die on your daily cross. By humbly admitting you have fallen short and accepting His forgiveness, you will grow closer to God and become even more grateful for Jesus’ sacrifice.
Even if you have done nothing yet, it’s not too late. You won’t get 40 days in before Easter, and that’s ok. What matters is spending some focused time considering the depth of your sin and the incredible gift God has given us through His Son Jesus Christ. The gift is everlasting life with Him even though by our own actions we deserve death.
The Bible tells us: “For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us” (Heb. 9:24) Each one of us should have to stand before God and answer for our sins. Unfortunately, many will still have to do that, and it will not end well for them. But for those who believe in Him, Jesus took it upon Himself to appear before God for us. He paid the price, and now we have life. Praise God!!
Have a great week and God bless.