Rend your heart!

"Rend your heart, and not your garments."
- Joel 2:13

(by Spurgeon)

and other outward signs of religious emotion,
are easily manifested and are frequently hypocritical; but to feel
true repentance is far more difficult, and consequently far less
common. Men will attend to the most multiplied and minute
ceremonial regulations; for such things are pleasing to the
flesh; but true religion is too humbling, too heart-searching, too
thorough for the tastes of the carnal men; they prefer something
more ostentatious, flimsy, and worldly. Outward observances are
temporarily comfortable; eye and ear are pleased; self-conceit is
fed, and self-righteousness is puffed up: but they are ultimately
delusive, for in the time of death, and at the day of
judgment, the soul needs something more substantial than
ceremonies and rituals to lean upon. Apart from vital godliness
all religion is utterly vain; offered without a sincere heart,
every form of worship is a solemn sham and an impudent
mockery of the majesty of heaven.

is divinely wrought and solemnly felt. It is a
secret grief which is personally experienced, not in mere form,
but as a deep, soul moving work of the Holy Spirit upon the
inmost heart of each believer. It is not a matter to be merely
talked of and believed in, but keenly and sensitively felt in
every living child of the living God. It is powerfully
humiliating, and completely sin purging; but then it is sweetly
preparative for those gracious consolations which proud
unhumbled spirits are unable to receive; and it is distinctly
discriminating, for it belongs to the elect of God, and to them

The text commands us to rend our hearts, but they are naturally
hard as marble: how, then, can this be done? We must take them
to Calvary: a dying Savior's voice rent the rocks once, and it is
as powerful now. O blessed Spirit, let us hear the death cries of
Jesus, and our hearts shall be rent even as men rend their
vestures in the day of lamentation.