The word repent is one that doesn’t sit too well with many people around the world. What is intended to be a gift and opportunity to encounter the grace of God has now become something individuals cringe at when hearing. I blame those wielding bullhorns and picket signs for the mess that has become of repentance. And while this liturgical experience may have a bad reputation due to the idiotic actions of others, we must understand that repentance itself one of the most vital parts of the Christian faith. Without it, a relationship with God isn’t possible.
Repentance is all about turning away from our fleshly desires, and instead, clinging to the beauty and supremacy of God’s will. There is nothing to be ashamed about in admitting you’ve messed up. Repentance bridges the gap between our failures and God’s forgiveness. That’s the beauty. It’s the gateway to new life and an unrelenting relationship with God.
You and I must stop viewing repentance as a burdensome I have to, and instead, realize it’s an undeserved I get to. We must understand how lucky we are to have a loving God who gives us the opportunity to admit our failures, and choose to turn away from our selfish ways. Repentance is a gift not a burden. There is an unfathomable liturgical experience when one finds the humility to turn from their ways and seek forgiveness in the grace of God.
The basic definition of repentance is: to turn away from something or change your mind. Nothing more and nothing less. Repentance is all about seeking forgiveness for the mistakes and downfalls we’ve found ourselves in the middle of. When we repent, we are telling God we put his will above our own.
Repentance itself was never meant to be promoted in a way of fear-mongering and hate, but instead of love and excitement for the life and grace that God brings when we decide to turn away from our selfish ways (Acts 3:19).
“Repentance grows as faith grows. Do not make any mistake about it; repentance is not a thing of days and weeks, a temporary penance to be got over as fast as possible! No; it is the grace of a lifetime, like faith itself. God’s little children repent, and so do the young men and the fathers. Repentance is the inseparable companion of faith.”—Charles Spurgeon
Let’s take a moment to renew the way we see repentance.
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