Someone complained to Padre Pio of being excessively distressed by the sins he had committed. Padre Pio replied to him:You can read more about a day in the life of Padre Pio at A Christian Pilgrimage
“That which you feel is pride; it is the demon which inspires you with this sentiment, it is not true sorrow.”
The penitent replied: “Father, how can you then distinguish what comes from the heart and is inspired by Our Lord, and that which instead is inspired by the devil?” “You will distinguish it,” replied the holy priest, “always by this: The spirit of God is a spirit of peace, and also in the case of grave sin, it makes us feel a tranquil sorrow, humble, confident, and this is due precisely to His mercy.
The spirit of the demon, on the contrary, excites, exasperates, and makes us in our sorrow feel something like anger against ourselves, whereas our first charity must be to ourselves, and so if certain thoughts agitate you, this agitation never comes from God, who gives you tranquility, being the Spirit of Peace. Such agitation comes from the devil.”
Thanks to Sue Cifelli for sharing.