Go through the process. You could skip ahead to Matthew chapter 22 and verse his 37 to 40. Hearing the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, it tells us that we should ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ The Lord says that on these two commandments depend the whole Bible.
And once we are broken by that law, we confess our sins to God, perhaps even taking the words of the Book of Common Prayer from the 16th century:
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid; Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Holy Spirit tells us in God’s word that nothing but the blood of Jesus can take our sins away.
Unless we do that removal of the great plank of sin from our eyes, we hear the words of the Lord Jesus from a verse, which comes slightly earlier in Matthew than the command to Love the Lord out God (Matthew 11:28-30):
Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
And if that prayer from the 16th century doesn’t do it for you, how about this from Samuel Johnson a century later:
O Lord, in whose hands are life and death, by whose power I am sustained, and by whose mercy I am spared, look down upon me with pity. Make me to remember, O God, that every day is [your] gift, and ought to be used according to [your] command. Grant me, therefore, so to repent of my [carelessness], that I may obtain mercy from [you], and pass the time [I have left on this earth] in diligent performance of [your] commands, through Jesus Christ. Amen.
With a confession like that, we can come and know the assurance of forgiveness, like the one that Moses gives us in Exodus chapter 34, where he reminds us that the Lord Jesus is a God who is ‘compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.’
Great is the gospel of our glorious God!