make me over//2013 ~ repent

As we begin the new year with fresh resolutions, we cannot help but recall the ones we have left incomplete.  It seems like even the greatest intentions cannot make our deepest desires come true.  We gear our entire first day around putting new habits into practice, complete with gym memberships, a fridge full of produce, or a brand new journal, and yet, we still fall short.  

In my personal experience, I have found that I have let my ideas and goals fall behind simply because I chose to remain stuck where I was.  I decided that I would begin to build a new life around a painful past.  

Well, think about that logic:

If you have a hole in the ceiling.. 
you don't just move the couch out from under it.   

You fix it.

The first step to getting our resolutions correct, 
at any time of year, 
is to repent.

Repent is a very convicting word.
It means we have done something backwards; something that needs to be corrected.
It also means we are remorseful for those things.

Before we are to make any major changes in our lives, we must understand where the problems are starting.  In the case of who we are in relation to God, it is always a problem in our heart and mind.  Either we feel unworthy of His love and saving grace or we feel we are above God and that we can do better than Him.  We believe we are doomed to eternal failure, or destined for bigger things than simply being a Christian.  What this usually leads to is a life of pride, sin and pain that leaves us yearning for comfort in the end.

With that said, let’s break down this one word into its meanings.  
(Yes, plural.. there are a couple.)

The first time “repent” appears in the Bible is Genesis 5:29

Noah has been born and his father, Lamech, named him this saying,

“this same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.”

Though the word “repent” does not appear, the Hebrew equivalent is there.  Comfort, is translated from the word “nacham” and means many things, one of which, “to comfort, ease, pity or console.”

The Lord chose to wipe out humanity because of their wrongs and sins.  Noah’s name proved itself once the flood waters began to rise and he was the one to comfort humanity by bringing life back to the earth. 

Exodus 13:17 uses the same word but in another way:

In the King James Version it says,

“And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt.”

The New International Version tells it a bit differently, however:

“When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter.  For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”

They might change their minds...

The NIV really spells out the heart of repentance by translating the word into “we change our minds.”  God was aware of the probability that His children would go back to old ways once they were tested.  To repent is also to change.  In this case, to give up and run the other way!

Though this may seem backwards, based on the first translation, it really isn’t.  Heading over the to the Book of Acts, we can tie it all together

Acts 2:38 in the KJV says 
“Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”  

Repent is translated from the Greek word “metanoeo” and it means “to think differently, to reconsider afterwards.. to repent.”

Peter is telling them that if they change their mindset, there will be a remission of sins and  they will be saved. 

Hebrew word nacham --> to comfort, soothe, be sorry
Greek word metanoeo --> to think differently

Repentance is simply 
comforting and healing our weariness and pain 
by changing the course of our thoughts.  

It is turning from sin and to God. 

It is securing our peace, and our place with Jesus.

By repenting, we can break the chains of insecurity, jealousy, anger, greed, pride, defense, bitterness and anything else that holds us captive.  We can comfort our hearts by understanding we need a Savior.  We can get closer to Him by changing our minds and running away from our current state of pain and disorder.  

When we truly repent 
we can then find the comfort to move forward 
and begin to restore normal thinking patterns.  

what is your history with repentance?

is there anything you are currently repenting of?

Print out this attached image below to collect your Hebrew/Greek words, scriptures and notes.  Keep them close and refer to them to remind yourself of the importance of giving up your pains, sins, failures and struggles to God.  
Know that only He is big enough to take them.  
Know that He will make them into something beautiful.

Popular posts from this blog

looking back

In with the old

a white flag moment