"The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly" (Proverbs 20:27).

My normally outgoing son had been acting sheepish for two days. He had been avoiding me as much as you can in a homeschooling family, and he was definitely dealing with something.

I could see the Holy Spirit working on his conscience, so I prayed my usual "sick 'em" prayers — you know, asking God to work on your child's heart until he turns back to Him in repentance. I wondered how long my son would struggle and if he would hide, ignore, or confess his problem. I didn't have to wait long. The very next day, the Holy Spirit's conviction weighed so heavily that he couldn't take the stress any longer.

"Mom," he said. "I need to tell you something."

"Yes," I responded. "What is it?"

"I took some money from your purse without asking you," he quietly confessed.

As Christians, we also avoid God after we've sinned; however, the Holy Spirit's job of convicting us of sin (John 16:8) brings us back to a right relationship with God. Even King David, "a man after God's own heart" (1 Samuel 13:14), attempted to ignore his conscience when his lust first caused him to sin with Bathsheba and then set up her husband's untimely death on the battlefield (2 Samuel 11). David finally yielded to God's correction when the Holy Spirit convicted David's conscience through a prophet and a touching story that reached his ex-shepherd's heart.

What about your conscience? Is it sensitive to God's correction and leading, or have you hardened your conscience with unconfessed sin? Aren't you tired of the anxious tension that has replaced your fellowship with your loving heavenly Father? If God has been speaking to you about your speech, your anger, or your thought life, stop running away from Him. Since He already knows your sin, run into His arms instead. He's just waiting for you to listen to "that little voice" and rediscover the strength of living in obedience to Him. "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9).

Lord God, I confess today that I have been living in disobedience to You. Forgive my rebellious heart and discipline me in Your love. Lead me back to You and restore to me the joy of my salvation. In Jesus' name, Amen.