The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise. (Psalms 51:17)
The next thing is contrition, deep Godly sorrow and humiliation of heart because of sin. If there is not true contrition, a man will turn right back into the old sin. That is the trouble with many Christians.
A man may get angry, and if there is not much contrition, the next day he will get angry again. A daughter may say mean, cutting things to her mother, and then her conscience troubles her, and she says:
“Mother, I am sorry: forgive me.”
But soon there is another outburst of temper, because the contrition is not deep and real. A husband speaks sharp words to his wife, and then to ease his conscience, he goes and buys her a bouquet of flowers. He will not go like a man and say he has done wrong.
What God wants is contrition, and if there is not contrition, there is not full repentance.Many sinners are sorry for their sins, sorry that they cannot continue in sin; but they repent only with hearts that are not broken. I don’t think we know how to repent now-a-days. We need some John the Baptist, wandering through the land, crying: “Repent! repent!”
Excerpt from “The Overcoming Life”. D. L. Moody