It's a subject most of us know from our own experience, I know I do! When I was a child, I had a 'besetting sin'... and it became a pattern in my life. I would get caught, and tearfully confess and apologize, it was like putting a 'band aid' over the sin, and going on...relieved that it was 'over' ...
Much later, as an adult... that very besetting sin, was something God dealt with in my life, and trust me... it was NOT a band aid fix! When God wants something out of our life that doesn't belong, He does it with His surgical skills. It is painful... but it is complete! He wants that sin removed from His child, so He takes us through His process, to be sure He 'gets it all'!
Repentance begins with obedience, a desire to do it God's way... We are convicted by our sin, we confess our sin, and we ask His forgiveness, we want that area in our life to be changed and healed. As I confessed my sin and repented (turned away from), He reminded me of things that needed to be restored and made right. I had many things from the past years to make right. I had letters to write, people to confront and ask forgiveness from, and restitution to be made. This process went on for a period of time...
The old pattern of sin was being changed in my life... As a child, I thought I was 'getting away with it'. Oh the foolishness of trying to do it on our own or thinking God may not see. (It reminds me of a friend who says her husband sneaks potato chips out of the pantry at night, and he thinks as long as she doesn't see him... it doesn't count!)
As an adult... I began to desire to know God in a deeper way. God is holy, and we don't get to first base with Him unless we get honest with ourselves, and with Him...
When genuine repentance comes, for an ingrained pattern of sin in our lives, .... the layers of sin are peeled off like an onion, one at a time, until the healing is complete, and in that process... God forgives, restores and makes strong the very thing that was the weakest. It is ALL His work, and it is real and lasting.
My 'band aid' attempts and efforts were worthless. The root problem was not removed and healed until I came to Him in complete honesty, willing to do whatever He asked...HE forgave and changed my life ... HIS way!
I am so thankful today, many years later, that this area of my life was forgiven and healed. When you do it God's way, it gets done right, and YOU. NEVER. WANT. TO . re-visit that area of sin again! It doesn't mean we never sin again, we do... I do, but when God forgave me, He also healed me from the inside out... It's a story I share over and over... it's part of His story in my life. He takes the weakest and most sinful areas and makes them strong. Nothing...NOTHING is impossible for God!
I've been reading ALL OF GRACE, by Spurgeon. Here's what he says:
"Repentance grows as faith grows"...
"Both forgiveness & repentance flow from the same source"...
"Jesus has both ready to freely give us"...
Painful though it may be... I'll take surgery at the hand of Jesus anyday, rather than a 'band aid', which only touches the surface and hides the deeper problem. The great thing is... we are NOT EVER beyond His ability to forgive, heal and change!
Thank the Lord, He is able to change, heal and forgive our sins. Great post today. Thanks for sharing your struggles with us. Sometimes we think we are the only ones struggling. But He can help us with anything.
I have a certain awe for God's surgery. He doesn't use anesthetics, and it often hurts painfully.
I have found myself praying, " Help me God, but gently, please."
In a hymn we sing about being ripened for heaven day by day.
I think maybe, that it is what God's loving surgery is all about.
Wonderful post and thanks for sharing.
How thankful am I for a healing, forgiving Saviour!
He is our place of refuge and our sanctuary.
That's shoutin grounds!
Oooh! Good stuff! Good, good stuff this morning!
Sonja, great post. We are always trying to fix things or patching them. When we get hurt we want to wash off the blood and cover it. With Jesus, we are covered by the blood and sure can't wash that off!
How thankful I am for God's amazing forgiveness and the great amount of patience He shows towards me time and time again. You shared this so beautifully. Spurgeon's book has blessed me too. I can't help but think what amazing grace He shares with me. I don't want just bandaids.
Thank you for this. It has brought tears to my eyes... I have been feeling depressed lately about a few things. It is comforting to know that God is not finished with me yet.
love to you!
Although it is painful, I'd rather have the Almighty Surgeon do His perfect work in me. After all, He knows what's best and right for me. It's easy to rationalize sin but before a holy God, there's no rationalizing. How thankful I am that I cannot hide from Him.
No bandaids; let's just go for the cure - Jesus in me!
Love you Sonja my sister,
It's such a huge subject, repentance! You've done an excellent job of focusing our understanding of it; and who among us hasn't tried the band-aid remedy in lieu of the real deal?!
I know, for me, when the Lord gets ahold of something He wants GONE, I'm so convicted that I don't have a moment's peace until I surrender & obey.
God's best to you & yours,
So thankful for His forgiveness. I don't deserve it!
Hope you and your family are doing well:)
Hi Sonja, I'm so glad you stopped by my blog so that I could come and visit you....I like what I'm reading. Great post and I'd rather have our ultimate Healer/Physican working on me and getting rid of the dross and sin than just covering it up.
Blessings to you today.
Here's another meaning for repentance:
(From the Greek word Metaneo) "To change your way of thinking." So when Jesus told the people to repent, He was saying "change the way you think!"
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