I used to believe that repentance was only meant for when I had done something really wrong. For a long time, I’d only ask God for forgiveness and turn away from certain ac-tions that seemed ‘more wrong’ than others. I had a deeply engrained belief that cer-tain sins were worse than others. You know the ones I’m talking about — the sins that were more acceptable were the ones I was committing, and the unacceptable ones were the ones other people committed. For me, when I would stretch seemingly out of character and commit an unacceptable sin, that was the time to repent.
Jesus, on the other hand, had a few (more like many) issues with that way of thinking. He began to teach me what repentance really was. Jesus pointed out key passages like, “Produce fruit in keeping with repentance” (Luke 3:8, emphasis added), and, “God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance” (Romans 2:4).
My learning of repentance is ongoing, and some days are more difficult than others. Most days focus on recognizing idols and kicking them out of the driver’s seat. Jeremi-ah 17:9 tells us that the heart is deceitful above all things, and perhaps that’s why I constantly put my trust in the wrong things. Often, I find the idol that creeps up is my own comfort. When thinking about the opportunities I have recently had to share Je-sus’ love, or the money God has entrusted to me, I can see that I backed down because I thought it would make me uncomfortable. Things like praying for someone in public, or talking to a stranger and blessing them with a gift, were missed opportunities for Je-sus’ Kingdom. Because I had failed to recognize and repent of this idol, I missed out on what Jesus had for me. Others also missed out. Jesus wants us to have life to the full (John 10:10) and knows that our idols will rob us of that. Let us walk with Jesus, affirm-ing that he is Lord.
Take some time to ask God, “Would you show me what I need to repent of today?”
Youth Volunteer, fantastic drummer and fiancé to crazy Kaitlyn