Devotion – August 20, 2015 – Repent, So Your Sins May Be Wiped Away
Back when I was in college, I went to a youth group event at a park. I wasn’t paying close enough attention as I was parking and as I pulled in, I grazed the car next to me. I quickly got out of my car to see if it was really that bad…it was. There was a big scratch right down the side of their car. Immediately my heart raced. I was a broke college student. I didn’t have a couple hundred dollars to fix a car! I looked around and saw that no one had noticed. I had a choice to make. I could move my car and walk away like nothing had happened or I could confess and risk the consequences.
Repentance can be a difficult thing. The first part is confession. Just that part can be difficult. As children, we probably learned to fear getting in trouble when we did something wrong and broke the rules. As adults, we may feel the same at work or home. Even if we don’t fear getting in trouble, we usually don’t like to admit our faults. Of course with God the situation is different. He already knows!! Yet, for some reason, we may still try to hide our sin.
The second part of repentance is turning away from our sin and turning to God. This can be hard, too. Sometimes we have real issues in our character that are going to take time and hard work to overcome. There may be habits or even addictions. Sometimes, truth be told, we like our sin. We like how we get the things we want from it or we like the way it makes us feel in the moment. In order to repent, we have to trust that God’s way is better, it’s worth it.
So, hear the good news from our verse in Acts.
When we repent, God promises to wipe away our sin…as though it never happened. Sometimes our sin may seem too big, but I promise you it isn’t. You aren’t going to surprise God. Not only does He already know, but He knew before He came and hung on the cross and knowing that, He still died to forgive you and wipe your sins out. Not only does God promise forgiveness, but he promises to refresh us and renew us. He doesn’t leave us to change our ways on our own. Through the power of the Holy Spirit He works in us to change us from the inside out, to heal our brokenness, and to overcome any sin, giving us joy and peace and renewal.
In today’s prayer below, I encourage you to reflect on specific areas in your life that you need to repent of.
I confess that I have sinned against you and against others. (take a few moments to confess specific sins)
I am truly sorry for my sins and, for the sake of Jesus Christ’s suffering and death, I ask that you would forgive me and help me to turn from my sin. (take a moment to ask God to help you regarding the specific sins you confessed) Help me to walk in Your ways for Your glory.
Having confessed your sins, hear God’s promise to you. Your sins have been wiped out completely! May your spirit be refreshed and renewed.