Contrite: (from the Latin contritus ‘ground to pieces’, i.e. crushed by guilt) is sincere and complete remorse (i.e. regret with a sense of guilt) for sins one has committed. The remorseful person is said to be contrite. shameful. [Wikipedia]
All of us have at one time or another found ourselves with a contrite heart and spirit; remorseful, down and out, feelings of loss, shame and no identity in who we are or what we should do. It is in these dark times of the valley, that we lose connectedness from the Father- we can’t here or discern His voice, nor move within our giftedness or offer our strength as we could before.
To use Jesus’ example- we as the branch feel absolutely broken off from the vine that gives us our food and life. All seems lost. Death seems certain. The Father seems distant and not concerned about this bad place I am in. The assault of the evil one is on a full speed offensive to have us question the heart of God. To question his Goodness. To doubt his intentions for us as sons and daughters of the King. Just as the enemy did with Eve in the garden- question the Father’s goodness and integrity.
When all lines of communication with the Father and Spirit seem broken, when we are struggling to keep our head above water with our finances, family, relationships, ministry, work…. and the enemy is pouncing on us… what do we do? We must persevere, but how?
The Bible is the Written Word of God.
Jesus is the Living Word of God.
The Holy Spirit is the Spoken Word of God.
In times of great battle when our hearts and lives are overcome with a contrite spirit, let us lean upon God’s word to remind us what He has already said about this matter. In His written Word we find rest, the peace of Jesus.
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them ALL. [NKJ]
The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant [contrite] heart, O God. [NLT]
I learned God-worship when my pride was shattered. Heart shattered lives ready for love don’t for a moment escape God’s notice. [MSG]
Isaiah 57:15 I dwell in the High and Holy Place, with him who has a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones. [NKJ]
And in the Message version of Isaiah 57:15 it adds, “…And what I do is put a new spirit in them, get them up and on their feet again.”
Isaiah 66:2 But on this one will I look on [bless]: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word. [ESV]
Unbelievable. Here is what the Bible says God’s response is to the contrite heart:
HE HEARS YOUR CRY, HE DELIVER ALL OF IT , HE IS NEAR, HE SEES YOU, NOTICES YOU, HE BLESSES YOU , HE WILL REVIVE YOU , HE PUTS A NEW SPIRIT IN YOU , HE DWELLS WITH YOU
Anything that we think, hear, assume or feel that is contrary is simply a lie from the enemy aimed at destroying us. Let our prayer be over our lives, families and brothers and sisters of the faith in their most desperate hour:
“The LORD is righteous in everything he does; he is filled with kindness. The LORD is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth. He grants the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cries for help and rescues them. The LORD protects all those who love him, but he destroys the wicked. I will praise the LORD and may everyone on earth bless His HOLY Name forever and ever.”
-Psalm 145:17-21 [NLT]
May it be so.