When We Are Contrite
Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 7:8-13
Key Verse: 2 Corinthians 7:9
…yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us.
The Apostle Paul had confronted these early believers in the Corinthian church. It was a tough letter to challenge them to stand firm on God’s truth and deal with sin whenever it comes from an unrepentant believer! They had not done this so Paul chastised them harshly, harshly enough to cause sorrow, according to chapter nine. These deep feelings of sorrow are never pleasant, especially when caused by a fellow Christ follow, but our scripture tells us today that this sorrow can cause true repentance. When sorrow causes true repentance, it is a Godly sorrow!
Look at some of the words used by Webster to define sorrow and sorry: pain of mind, grief, sadness, feeling pity or regret; distressed; miserable, wretched. These words describe an overall feeling that begins to look like “one who is contrite!” As unpleasant as it is, this delights God, not because He likes to see us in pain, but He wants to get us to turn from evil ways; to trust in Him! The contrite are truly sick about the sin in their lives, pained over their personal rebellion against God. When we come to this point, it is God’s pleasure to forgive and restore us. He needs us to get to this level of pain, but He doesn’t want us to stay there! Godly sorrow leads to repentance; the truly repentant delight God! The Apostle Paul wrote: “you became sorrowful as God intended.” Have you been there yet?
Father, to think about the ways I have grieved you in my life is painful. I ask that you use this pain to drive me to the place you want me to be. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.