From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”
Matthew 4 : 17
Anyone who has sat exams knows the closer you get to the exams the more panic you feel. At some point the reckoning you are waiting for comes and whether you have done the work or not will be plain to see. Jesus message was saying to Israel the reckoning is here now; this is the time. That was quite some message since Israel had been waiting thousands of years for it!
Its impact is lost on us because we have been living with it all our lives. We don’t sense the urgency it had when first delivered or catch that Jesus was not encouraging people to repent, he was instructing. This is not optional but something everyone is called to do.
So how goes the repenting?
Repentance is when go in a new direction and leave behind what was to travel to what will be. Biblically it is when we choose to put our trust in God for our past, present, future and we trust in Jesus as our Saviour. Effectively when we make God the greatest driving force and foundation in our lives. Repentance is hard and tough and takes everyday effort.
It is not remorse. Remorse is when you are caught and you feel ashamed. Repentance is the turning around. We show our repentance in how we live and speak and how we serve God.
Prayer: Father repentance is really hard. We like the way we are and changing takes effort beyond that which we have ourselves. Help us, encourage us, inspire us to live out our repentance every day through love and service to you.
Action: Consider the difference between remorse and repentance. How can you make the difference real in your life?