261. Repentance: More Than Just Words

Note from The Storyteller:  If you have not read postings prior to the one that follows, I recommend that you do so.  There is insight that may help as you walk the road toward spiritual maturity.  All of the prior postings can be found at the following website:   www.waiting4thetrain.com.  Also, please forward this email to everyone you think would be interested in and may benefit from the devotional postings.  Thank you!

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“Another gem from the apostle Paul in the Book of Acts,” Stan said one morning.

“What do you have?” I responded.

“Five words that zero in on what repentance is really all about.” Stan replied.

Continuing, he said, “Repentance is the process that involves going in a different direction from the one in which I have been headed.”

“Too often,” Stan said, “my repentance is hollow.  I say I am going to change directions and stop doing such-and-such, but my repentance ends with the good intention to change without really changing.  It is not really repentance; it is the intent to repent.”

“I can certainly relate to that,” I replied.

“And that is what the apostle Paul addressed when he was talking to King Agrippa about his faith in Christ and how he talked to people about their need to repent and turn to God.”

“After saying they needed to repent and turn to God, he then added what is to me the key essential element by saying that the people who repented needed to be performing deeds appropriate to repentance.”

“Deeds appropriate to repentance,” I repeated.  “That certainly seems like an essential key.”

“You, my friend,” Stan replied, “have that one hundred percent correct.  And, forgetful person that I am, it is something I have to be reminded of constantly throughout every single day.”

“Saying I repent is not sufficient.  The words have to be followed by actions that are appropriate to my stated repentance.  If I keep on doing the same thing, I have not repented.”

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“Consequently, King Agrippa, I did not prove disobedient to the heavenly vision, but kept declaring both to those in Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.  Acts of the Apostles 26: 19, 20.

Prayer:  Lord, you know how often I come to you with words of repentance, with good intentions to turn from my way to your way, but fail to take the next step of truly turning around.  Please forgive me of all of those times of empty repentance.  And, please, Lord, help me in following through by doing what is appropriate to my stated repentance.  Please lead and help me to follow.  Thank you I can and do bring all of these prayers to you in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

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