My Answer


From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Q: Some years ago, I was carrying guilt that weighed me down and discouraged me from getting on with life. After hearing the Gospel, I got my heart right with God and He gave me a new lease on life, including the restoration of some relationships that had been lost. As Christians, are we supposed to ask God to reveal other things that cause burdens and steal our joy? – G.R.

A: A psychologist from Yale University stated once, “If it occurs to you that you’ve done something to injure someone else, guilt compels you to do something to fix it, to repair the bond.” An evidence of a true believer is to sense God’s Holy Spirit convicting us of any sin in our life. “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23–24, NKJV).

An old Scottish pastor said to “pray for a strong and lively sense of sin; the greater the sense of sin, the less sin.” A sense of sin and guilt not only tells us when we’re in trouble, but like the sense of pain, it can keep us from it. The Bible teaches that Christ cleanses the conscience “to serve the living God” (Hebrews 9:14, KJV).


Our personalities, our intelligence, and our capabilities are gifts from God’s own bountiful hand. If we divert their use for our own profit, we become guilty of selfishness. Guilt is not all bad. Without it, there is nothing to drive a person toward self-examination and toward God for His forgiveness. The psalmist prayed to the Lord, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit” (Psalm 51:12, NKJV).

(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

©2024 Billy Graham Literary Trust. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.





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