The right kind of grief

“For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.”  2 Corinthians 7:10

I set out to read the beatitudes this morning, but as a result of some cross-referencing, I bumped into this passage and couldn’t get past it.  I have been spilling over with grief lately.  Grief over what could’ve been, grief over what should be , grief over what I am and what I am not.  Grief over loss, grief over confusion and misdirection.  Grief in every shape and form.  And while I have repeatedly cried out to God, He has remained distant and, it would seem, uncaring.  And so the grief has deteriorated into some sort of emotional death that needs to be dealt with and fought each day, often to no avail.

But this verse seems to clear up this mess with little hesitancy or mistake.  I believe that my grief over these past months has been worldly grief.  As I thought about the difference between godly grief and worldly grief, it occurred to me that perhaps godly grief is about our actions, our attitudes and our hearts, while worldly grief is a reflection and result of our circumstances.  Simply put, godly grief is a mourning or sadness provoked by the presence, or lack of, God in our lives and worldly grief comes about through our world and our conditions.

Admittedly, my world is hard right now.  There are situations and circumstances in my life that are producing a great deal of stress and strain.  And I have succumbed, over and over, to worldly grief.  And yet, in the midst of it all, I have failed to succumb to the only grief that is actually productive.  I have grieved my circumstances, but not my part in them or my response to them.  I have repeatedly come before the throne of God bemoaning my lot in life while my judgmental attitude and selfish heart rest squarely on my shoulders.  While there may be legitimate reasons for worldly grief, there is also ample cause for godly grief, which I have decidedly neglected.  It is time to change my pattern of grief.  It is time to stop examining and lamenting the ways I am a victim and start repenting of the ways I have contributed to my own hardened heart.  It is time to allow God to reveal to me the actual things that should be grieving my heart, which are, not coincidentally, the very same things that grieve His.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Help me manage the spam *