Friday, November 5, 2010


Welcome to "Fan the Flame" Friday.

This is a weekly post that will be "short and sweet" (kinda like me...)

Just a word and a phrase, a sentence or a question...just a little something to "fan the flame" of your creativity!

Today's word: guilt

Do you think guilt is a good thing or a bad thing? Explain.

Do you think there's a difference between guilt and conviction?

Let me know what you think!!

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:6-7)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. Yes. I think there's a difference between the two. I'll make my answer short and sweet, kind of like you.

    Guilt brings shame.
    Conviction brings change.

    Just my 2 cents.

  2. I like what Debbie said!

    I think guilt can be a good and a bad thing. If you let it "eat away at you" then it is a bad thing but if you allow it to convict you to change, then it is a good thing.


  3. I also agree with Debbie- and Betty-

    Guilt can be a good thing, like the Robot used to say, "Danger, Will Robinson, DANGER!", but it can also be bad if you've done something that caused the guilt and have never dealt with it.

    I believe that bad Guilt keeps you stagnant and can take you backwards in life (beating yourself up,never working through it) conviction will move you forward!
    Love you sister!

  4. Hi Sharon,

    This is quite a topic you've chosen for today; the questions you ask are not easy.

    Do you think guilt is a good thing or a bad thing? Explain. It can be both depending on the context. I remember as a child I stole some candy from the local store and when I arrived home and showed my grandmother, she explained that stealing is wrong. She had me walk back to the store, hand the candy back to the owner and tell them I stole it. I felt guilt for what I did, and I felt guilt from the time I left home to the point when I handed the candy back and said, "I'm sorry for stealing this candy." It was good for me to experience remorse (guilt) for doing something wrong.

    When a woman feels guilt (responsibility) about being the reason for making her husband or boyfriend angry enough to hit her, then, that kind of guilt is wrong.

    Do you think there's a difference between guilt and conviction? I believe these two words are different. I can feel guilty about something that isn't true because guilt affects my feelings.

    Conviction has to do with being convinced by proof of someone being wrong (guilty). A parent can say, "My Johnny would never do that", but based upon the evidence, mom is convinced that Johnny did indeed throw dad's autographed Willie Mays baseball through the neighbor's window.

    I look forward to reading other responses to these questions.

    Blessings and peace.


  5. I think they are different and they both have there places. Plus they are both good and bad.

    See I guess I am not convicted with a direct answer.


  6. Hi, Sharon:
    I grew up in a fear-based religion and a home full of fear. It took me years to separate guilt from conviction. Now that I know the Lord's love for me and his great compassion, it is so clear! I welcome conviction! There's no shame with it.

    Love ya,

  7. Hi Sharon - great questions. MTJ brought out a good point - guilt (remorse) can have its place. However, when we continually feel guilty about passed sins, then guilt becomes a bad thing. Jesus forgave all our sins, past, present, and future. Once we confess and repent (turn from) we need not feel guilty.

    To the Christian, conviction is God's way of making us aware of unconfessed sin. He will never condemn us to make us feel guilty. Satan, on the other hand, delights in condemning us.

    Also - thanks for all you comments on my blog this week. I haven't had time to visit everyone, but hope to make up for lost time this weekend.


  8. Debbie - Your 2 cents was worth at least a buck! Thanks for your input. I agree - guilt=shame (not from God) conviction=change (absolutely from God!)

    Betty - I agree with you. Guilt can "eat away" at one's heart. And that doesn't lead to change - it leads to emotional paralysis.

    Janet - YES! Guilt keeps you stagnant - great word choice (and you KNOW how I love a well-chosen word!!) I also like the idea that guilt moves you backward, conviction moves you forward! I have found that to be true in my life.

    MTJ - You always make me think, my friend. I especially thought your insights about the difference between guilt (remorse) and guilt (responsibility) were very profound. Such a wise distinction. I also agree that guilt has to do with one's feelings. And I think conviction has to do with one's spirit. In that case, I would have to agree that conviction is based on being convinced of the proof of wrong. That seems like a pretty good job description for the Holy Spirit. He convicts us of our sin, based on the proof of God's perfectly holy standard. (Your grandmother was a wise woman!!)

    Sandie - Love it! Even when you're being serious, you still make me smile! They both have their places - perhaps it's just a matter of whether the feeling leads to healthy change or unhealthy despair.

    Mary - Sorry about that fear-filled upbringing. Legalism does tend to lead to bad guilt, in my opinion. But, conviction that leads to repentance and/or a closer walk with the Lord - bring it on!!

    Joan - Confess and repent - that is the antidote to bad guilt. The goal of the Holy Spirit's conviction is to lead us BACK to the Lord. Guilt seems to separate us from Him. The Holy Spirit makes us aware of sin, instead of condemning us. (You know how much I enjoy your blog...)

    As always, I love when people come to "fan the flame" - I always look forward to everyone's thought-full insights.

    Here's my 5 cents (had to raise Debbie) - and I've also used some of your insights to add to my thoughts:

    I think guilt is a "feeling" thing - conviction is a "spirit" thing. Guilt leads to emotional paralysis and despair - Conviction lead to spiritual repentance and renewal. Guilt stays focused on the sin - Conviction keeps its eye on the Savior. Guilt looks back at the past - Conviction leads to a change in the future. Satan uses guilt to condemn - the Holy Spirit uses conviction to lead to confession. Guilt destroys - Conviction restores. Guilt is all about me, my sin - Conviction is all about Him, His forgiveness.

    When we are covered with the blood of Christ, we are declared, "NOT GUILTY." But, in order to continue the work of becoming more Christ-like, the Spirit convicts us of unconfessed sin.


  9. Hi Sharon -

    I am not sure about the answers to your questions. What I do know is that guilt equals no peace...

    I left a comment on your post from June 30, 2010, "BRAINSTORM."

  10. Sandra - Yes, you have hit the nail on the proverbial head! I agree, guilt does not lead to peace. That's why I make the distinction between guilt and conviction. God's way leads to peace - therefore, conviction from the Holy Spirit, a pricking of our conscience, leads to restoration of our relationship with God. THAT is the only source of true peace.

    I'll head over to read brainstorm comment!!

    Thanks for stopping by - I always love hearing from you!


  11. Enjoyed reading the thoughts everyone shared. The first thing that came to mind is that we're all guilty of sin and after the Father convicted me I was able to repent and receive His salvation. As we continue our walks with Him there will still be things we're indeed guilty of but we must make sure that we don't fall into condemnation but rather conviction.

  12. Wanda - Thanks for sharing. I really enjoy hearing everyone's perspective, too - God made us all so unique.

    You have summed everything up in such a simple, concise manner!

    We are guilty of sin, and the Spirit convicts us. This leads to repentance and salvation. After being declared not guilty, we will still sin. Though we must still confess and repent, we must never allow ourselves to feel condemned. Jesus won that victory, once and for all!

    Amen, Wanda -



"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)