It was when the prodigal son came to himself that he saw that he had sinned. Before this, he had had no conviction of it.
There are many who say that they have no real conviction of sin. They look at their life and are unable to discover any crimson sins.
Conviction of sin is not anything man-made. It is the Holy Spirit who has to produce this. The Spirit does this when he turns the searchlight on a person. He reveals to us that our real sin is indifference toward God. We do not have time for that which is the most important. We are so preoccupied, bound by fear of man and man’s approval. God has no place in our life. This is our real sin.
Arise and go to your Father! You will not have been in the presence of God very long before you will fall on your knees and plead, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you, and I am not worthy to be called your son.” You will discover how filthy you are and that all your inner being is polluted by sin.
How wonderful then to find the open arms of the Father! You may come just as you are and he will receive you.
Every day you must come that same way to the Father. You will never be through with your confession, “Father, I have sinned.” But how unspeakably great it is, that you are permitted to come.
Hans Edvard Wisløff (1902—1969) was a Norwegian theologian and writer. He was also the Bishop of the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland from 1959 until his death in 1969.
Wisløff, H.E., Quiet Moments on the Way Home. Fergus Falls, MN: Faith & Fellowship Press, 1993.