Key Verses: My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in. Proverbs 3:11-12
Over the last few days, as we have considering repentance together maybe you have started to feel a little down. There is awareness of just how much we need to repent of and how much we tolerate sin. God’s plan for repentance is not to make us feel depressed and beat ourselves us. Repentance is there for our good and is a gift of grace.
God’s grace leads to repentance as He demonstrates His great love for us. The reason we have any hope at all in repentance is that “…The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, is slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin…” Exodus 34:6-7.
John Newton wrote in his great hymn ‘Amazing Grace,’ ‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, and grace my fears relieved.” It is because of Grace that God convicts us of our sin and shows us the solution. He could leave us living in our mess, but because of love, he intervenes.
One of the Holy Spirit roles is to convicts us of our sins and instill a healthy sense of guilt in us until we confess, repent and leave it at the cross. This guilt works similarly to pain in our bodies. It is an invaluable warning light that says something is wrong and alerts us to a problem. It shouts out, “something wrong, repent.” When we repent, God forgives immediately and entirely, and that very moment, we are released from its hold. It would simply be foolish to ignore the warning of pain in your body when there is a remedy, and likewise, it is foolish to ignore conviction when it is simply God pointing us to a better way, a better life and an abundant life in Him.
Thanking God for His discipline doesn’t come naturally to us, but we should always praise Him for it because He says in Revelation 3:19 “Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent.” God shows us the solution to our problem, not because he has to, but because He overflows in grace.