Mourning over your Sins

By Father Valeriy Zakharov

Repentance… We continue to cry about our sins even after they have been defeated. A cry about sins is the cry of Adam, who conceives his disloyalty to God. Even if we have defeated a particular sin, we understand, that we are sinful by our nature.

We can only mourn over the sins which we have overcome. We cry because we are imperfect, and it is not like feeling sorry about ourselves. Of course, God evaluates what we do differently, as He considers the abilities and conditions of each particular human being. However, knowing our sins, knowing that we are responsive for our actions in the face of God, in our mind we should acknowledge repentance and it must not terrify or weaken us. It should be not a suffering, but a kind of a border between the real and unreal, when we understand we are sinful people, but at the same time God purifies our souls. This knowledge should not make us despair. We should rather rejoice because God loves us and forgives us just like the prodigal son, who wasted all his property. This condition can save a person from sin and teaches to live with God.

Pious Saint Augustine said: “Love God and do what you want”. What a simple advice! However, God looks at us with the eyes full of purity and majesty on the one hand, and appears full of mercy and with empathy on the other hand. Some people see Christ as someone who is strict,  others see Him as the suffering Christ and others are certain that Christ looks upon us with empathy. All of these aspects can be connected with our Lord. The cure He wants to give us is unique for each person. God has no patterns.

I wish that we can all accept everything that God does for us, and be kind to our neighbors just like He is kind to us, because this is how our relationship towards God is strengthened – by our attitude towards other people. But how can we bring the light of Christ to our souls? How can we let this light melt our heart and burn the mold in which our sins are growing? A sin will repeat itself until we reach the place where it is growing, until we crush the reason of this sin, until we ask God that He helps us to better ourselves. To do this we have to see it, to see the reason, but this will be a feat of faith for us. Thus we show that we place out hope in God. We can pray for years and even decades asking God to heal us. And he certainly will. God says: “And him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John, 6:37). And this concerns each person, who does not give up and tries to overcome his sinful nature and bring joy to the people around, but does not turn back on God, waiting for His mercy.

A Sermon by Father Valeriy Zakharov on November 29, 2016, 
St. Elisabeth Convent

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