Of this one thing I am convinced: I can recognize God's conviction by the love it is wrapped in.

"Because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastens everyone he accepts as his son (Hebrews 12:6 NIV).

I can still see myself sitting on a brown couch in a basement apartment; the very first place we lived in as newly weds.

I'd risen early to have my quiet time, but was being hammered with guilt. I don't remember the issue any more. I only remember my new husband telling me that God doesn't torment or harass. Satan does 'that.'

Many times since, I have felt the relentless hammer. I have resisted Satan and drawn near to God (James 4:7-8). I have confessed my sins and received His forgiveness.

Many times, too, I have experienced God's conviction. He doesn't call me a failure, nor does He question whether I'm really a Christian. God reminds me that sins often bear consequences, but He doesn't sentence me to a lengthy period of humiliation.

God's conviction is an invitation. His conviction is about restoring our relationship.

God's conviction is wrapped in love.