“Mourn like a virgin dressed in sackcloth for the husband of her youth!”
The saddest of situations is when the one you loved is gone, or has left you. The Lord requires the same deep heartfelt mourning for sin and the steadfast desire to turn away from it. God likens it to the sadness we feel when our nearest and dearest are gone and we are left alone. The heart wrenching sadness and sorrow of loss is so great and causes us such deep distress. The sense of rejection and isolation can be almost impossible to cope with, except for the strength of the Lord. In our distresses we seek the Lord and find our peace and comfort in Him. We must embrace the Word of God, hold on to it and find help in the things around us that he has given us to do.
This deep sorrow is the same sorrow we should be feeling about our sins and weaknesses. Only when we feel the sorrow will we turn away, for often our hearts are hard and we ignore the warnings of Scripture. We serve a mighty God who is patient with us and willing to forgive us repeatedly, but we seek holiness and therefore the avoidance of sins will be our number one concern. There are times we feel sorry for our sin, but do we actually mourn over it? Do we feel pain that we disappoint the Lord and other people?
We can easily hide from our own hearts and imagine we are good enough. There are always sins to fight and to be put away from us.
“The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as some count slowness; but he is patient with us, not wishing that anyone should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
2 Peter 3:9
One of God’s attributes is His long-suffering nature and His willingness to forgive. He does not punish us as we deserve but is willing to wait for us to come to repentance and bow our will to His holy will. He does not punish His people, but will allow them to suffer if it will bring them into a good place and help them to live more godly lives. The Lord wants more of us, not less, and knows that closeness to him is the greatest comfort we possess. Let us cling to Him and find Him to be our all in all.