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Guilt is a merciless master! Consider what some notable people have had to say about guilt.

Guilt: the gift that keeps on giving. Erma Bombeck.  Repentant tears wash out the stain of guilt. St. Augustine.   While the resurrection promises us a new and perfect life in the future, God loves us too much to leave us alone to contend with the pain, guilt and loneliness of our present life. Josh McDowell.

Why is guilt so prevalent in so many people?  The reasons are as varied as people are each unique, but there are some common threads that all of us share that are the causes for guilt.

  1. We are ashamed of things said, done, or “thought” as we reflect on our lives.
  2. Our memories retain painful and shameful moments vividly.
  3. The closer we are to the LIGHT of our LORD, the more visible are our own flaws.
  4. Satan delights in accusing us on every possible occasion and in every way.
  5. As we seek to deal with our children or others in our circle that come to talk to us about a matter that is grieving them, we are reminded that we, too, have been guilty of sin.

Cancer is an insipid physical malady.  Malignant spots can be growing inside of us and we can be unaware of the attack that is occurring.  Guilt is not visible to other people. It is hidden deep in the soul.  However, unconfessed sin and unresolved guilt can destroy a person’s mental well-being, confidence, and peace with God and others.  If a person is to be able to truly delight in being in the presence of God, then sin must be confessed, forsaken, and forgiven. 

Once we have earnestly confessed sin and sought the mercies of God, we need to live in the assurance that we are forgiven and “cleansed from all unrighteousness”.   God not only chooses to remove our sin from us, but He also makes us “whiter than snow”. Active guilt is a person’s choosing to pull back the “snow” and dig up and display what has been buried beneath it. 

Consider again the writings of King David…. How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered!How blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity, and in whose spirit, there is no deceit! When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away Through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me;
My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer. 
I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord”;
And You forgave the guilt of my sin.
(Psalm 32:1-5).

Simple steps to follow today to be forgiven and to live in the reality of knowing sin and guilt have been removed by the mercies of the Lord Jesus who paid for their penalty for us….

  1. Be thorough, earnest, and honest before God in a season of contrition and confession.
  2. Once those sins have been fully confessed, determine to distance yourself from them by putting safeguards in place to prevent repeating those same sins.
  3. Receive God’s full forgiveness for your rebellion and apply His grace to your heart.
  4. Rejoice that you are “free” to pursue God, fellowship with others, and ministry opportunities that He sets before you.