One of the poems I wrote during my leave of absence grew out of my sorrows over grieving the Holy Spirit. It is bad enough to know that God is dishonored by my sin. But to hear Paul connect my particular sins with grieving the Holy Spirit was even more painful.
This he does in Ephesians 4:30–32. He says, “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” And then he names my sins: “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
There are mysteries in the self-sufficient Spirit being grieved. And there are many sorrows in saints who do it. And there is a day coming when it will be done no more.
My patient Comforter, my God,
My Life, my Breath, my holy Zeal,
My soul is doubly sorrowful:
That I still sin against your Seal,
And sinning cause my Sovereign grief.
I know it is your holy way
To make your grief serve perfect joy,
But I still pray, O bring the day
When, in the twinkling of an eye,
My soul will doubly be relieved:
I will not ever sin again,
And you will nevermore be grieved.