I had a friend say to me once, “I don’t need God to convict me right now. It’s not like I’m unaware of all the things that are wrong with me!”
When I think about or convict myself of my sin, it only leads to discouragement and more self-hatred. I get caught up in “Why can’t I get past this. I know I shouldn’t be thinking this way. The Bible says…” And after a good self-beating, I try to mantra my way out of sin. “Jesus, help me to love that person. Jesus, help me to love that person. Jesus, seriously. Are you listening? ‘Cause I am not loving that person…”
God rarely addresses my actions but goes to the heart of the issue. Per our discussion last night at Exchange, God doesn’t seem to say, “You shouldn’t be rude to people.” He seems more interested in, “You don’t trust me with your day” or “Your pride is making you unforgiving. Forgive as I have forgiven.” When the Holy Spirit convicts, the immediate reponse is worship for the grace I am being shown in light of the divine mirror being held before my eyes. And instead of the focus being turned to self, the focus is turned to His mercy. There’s no cringing or slinking away from the Holy Spirit when He shows me my sin. There’s no compulsion to run and hide.
His tenderness is palpable.