Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. -I Corinthians 7:10, NIV.
Today’s sermon at church brought godly conviction in my heart. The topic was discipleship and obeying God in the mundane. It was a good reminder to me about making a decision to follow Jesus and following through on that decision day by day.
The specifics of the Holy Spirit convicting me was over my ruminating on my drive about how I would respond to my ex-wife if I ran into her again. God gently reminded me in the service that I have forgiven her and ought not to ruminate on such negative things. He encouraged me to focus upon the gifts He has lavished upon my life cultivating gratefulness as opposed to bitterness. I can choose whether or not to ruminate, and I can choose to honor my choice to forgive her. God reminded me of that truth.
I say this was the Holy Spirit who convicted me because I noticed the fruit of the conviction. It was godly sorrow as opposed to worldly sorrow. In other words, I did not hear condemnation in the conviction. It was not an attack on me as a person or a shame assault on my personal worth.
The Holy Spirit simply and gently reminded me of what I already knew: ruminating on angry and verbally violent thoughts towards my ex-wife is not very forgiving and just drags my spirit down into the muck. It is much better to look at the spunky little three year old and her smiles remembering how she would never have come into my life apart from my first marriage ending, for example. Time is better spent counting my many blessings.
What do gifts has God given you to be thankful for?
A son? A daughter?
A beautiful day?
A dog? A cat? A ferret?
While adultery is wrong and I do not apologize for being passionate in saying such, I encourage all–self-included–to dwell on things above like our perfect Father who gives us perfect gifts!
And let’s count our blessings together.