It is an easy thing to call yourself something, especially if others around you are professing it too. It is easy to call yourself a Christians when your family members are Christians, you have Christians friends, you have Christian co-workers, etc.
You get up on a Sunday morning, you head off to church with your Bible in hand, you shake hands, you smile, you sing and perhaps even clap your hands and maybe even raise them a time or two... provided others are doing so as well. You leave feeling a bit smug as you have done your duty for the week. You feel and perhaps even look like a fine Christian man or woman, but are you?
Repentance. You don't hear that word a lot anymore but I think we need to not only hear it, we need to do it. To repent means much more than saying I'm sorry. In my classroom, you will hear children say they are sorry all the time only to turn around and do the same thing again. They said they were sorry but reverted back to the same behavior within minutes. Why? Because they were not repentant! A repentant heart is one which wants nothing to do with sin. It wants to turn things around, it wants to make things right, it wants to live God's Way rather than it's own way.
Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, Acts 3:19 (NKJV)Perhaps there will be some who disagree with me but I believe repentance is a conscious act. Oh, I don't mean you have to do it in a church after three songs, a message and an altar call. I just mean you are aware that at some moment in time you came to the realization that you were repentant of your sins and you wanted them gone!
While we are saved by grace rather than by works of righteousness, certain things become evident when we become a new creature in Christ. We bear the marks of the cross.
These days shallow and feeble resolve abound And true devotion and passionate fervor are seldom found But there are those who often feel they're all alone Those of whose identities are known By the mark of the crucified Son
Praying, caring, loving, sharing
These are the marks of the cross
Giving, bearing, feeling, daring
To lay down your life on the line
Forgetting what you leave behind
And willing to suffer the loss
Of the marks of the cross
These days the search for detachment and solitude
Lead to retreating to fortresses no one would dare intrude
Then there are those whose restless burdens start to show
Those who unmistakably most know
There's no crown 'til we suffer the cross
All our identity rests in the knowledge
Of who we're created to be
We are His workmanship, made in His image
For all of creation to see
The marks of His pain and His glory
Do you bear the marks of the cross?
Great blog K. When a person fully realizes what Jesus Christ did, they are changed. There is no getting around that. They are not the same person anymore. I fear for many in christendom. Many seem to hold that one stays in bondage even after faith in Christ. There is no scripture for that, the Bible does not teach it. When we are washed in that sinless, pure, Holy blood, it profoundly changes us. The Holy Spirit does not lead us into sin, but to Holiness. We do indeed 'repent'. God Bless. Billy