“Oh, how often they rebelled against him in the wilderness
and grieved his heart in that dry wasteland.”
Psalm 78:40, NLT
“For forty years I was angry with them, and I said,
‘They are a people whose hearts turn away from me.
They refuse to do what I tell them.’”
Psalm 95:10, NLT
“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God [do not offend or vex or sadden Him], by Whom you were sealed (marked, branded as God’s own, secured) for the day of redemption (of final deliverance through Christ from evil and the consequences of sin).”
Ephesians 4:30, AMP
I must say, we instinctively know how to offend God. No one has to teach us how it’s done, we just know how to do it. We have the amazing ability to sadden God. Our sins, and our rebellion causes God to tremble and weep. Disobedience, in any form affects the very essence of God’s well-being.
As a believer in Jesus, I know that sin is never permanent. It is not like getting a spiritual tattoo on our hearts. Our faith prevents sin from completely attaching itself to our hearts. But my sorrow or grief over my sin, must drill itself directly into my heart. I should come to the point where I can not sin against Him who loves me hysterically.
To turn back to Him involves “contrition.” To be contrite is to imply a very simple acknowledgment of our sin– and the rebellion that is often seen within. Somehow this is possible. I do not understand the mechanics of it all. But I am very glad it is there. God loves a heart that is contrite.
God is very offended by our sin. But somehow we do not grasp this. More or less this is a bit intangible. In our mind, we go don’t ever stop sinning against Him. We feel that we are getting away of something, which isn’t true at all.
As a closet-Lutheran, I propose the Lutheran Church which also has its own act of contrition, which is said during Holy Absolution. The following version, taken from the Lutheran Service Book (2006), says:
- O Almighty God, merciful Father, I a poor, miserable sinner, confess to you all my sins and iniquities, with which I have ever offended you and justly deserved your punishment now and forever. But I am heartily sorry for them and sincerely repent of them, and I pray you of your boundless mercy, and for the sake of the holy, innocent through many bitter sufferings and death of your beloved son, Jesus Christ, to be gracious and merciful to me, a poor sinful being.
I can say nothing more than this. I will simply rest in this kindness that isn’t me at all. He loves each of us, as if we were the only ones. Thank you Father.