4. It is initiated through Repentance
There is a story that leaked in the internet about a US naval ship and the Canadian authorities off the coast of the Newfoundland. Here it is the radio conversation:
Americans: “Please divert your course 15 degrees to the North to avoid a collision.”
Canadians: “Recommend you divert YOUR course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision.”
Americans: “This is the captan of a US Navy ship. I say again, divert YOUR course.”
Canadians: “No, I say again, you divert YOUR course.”
Americans: “THIS IS THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN, THE SECOND LARGEST SHIP IN THE UNITED STATES’ ATLANTIC FLEET. WE ARE ACCOMPANIED BY THREE DESTROYERS, THREE CRUISERS AND NUMEROUS SUPPORT VESSELS. I DEMAND THAT YOU CHANGE YOUR COURSE 15 DEGREES NORTH. THAT’S ONE-FIVE DEGREES NORTH, OR COUNTER MEASURES WILL BE UNDERTAKEN TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF THIS SHIP.”
Canadians: “This is a lighthouse. Your call.”
Even though the Navy denies this story and similar stories are reported back in 1931, it helps us to understand how repentance happens. We hear the Gospel, the Spirit of God works in our hearts and minds to help us to understand the message, showing us that we are going in the wrong direction and a change a course is necessary. It is by the grace and power of God that we will be able to change the course in which we find ourselves and make a u-turn.
That was the core preaching in the beginning of the church, and this was what Paul preached to everyone: “I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus. Acts 20:21.” Repentance involves a change in our way of thinking and in our way of behaving. Like everything else in our Christian life it is a gift from Jesus, this is what Peter and the other apostles taught: “God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. Acts 5:31.” Paul wrote: “…God’s kindness leads you toward repentance? Romans 2:4.” It is the kindness of God that will make us to do a U-turn in our life and start to walk toward God.
As you can see, there is no real Christian life without repentance. A significant change must happen in our life when we encounter with Christ and His message. And we cannot forget that repentance will follow us for our whole life. Every time that we deviate from the path, the Spirit and the Word will point out our misstep and guide us back to the right way.
Have a blessed week,