Turn Your Life AroundDaily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
“The time promised by God has come at last!” he announced. “The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!”
In Mark 1:15 we read a summary of the Good News preached by Jesus: “The time promised by God has come at last! The Kingdom of God is near!”
How did Jesus encourage people in his day to respond to this good news? How should we respond to it today?
Jesus spelled out how people should respond to the Good News of the Kingdom of God: “Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!” The second part of this imperative is the easiest for us to understand. Jesus was calling people to trust that he was telling the truth. The long-awaited reign of God was at hand in him and his ministry. His proclamation was true and worthy of full acceptance.
Yet it was not something that deserved mere assent. It wouldn’t have been enough if those who hear the Good News of the Kingdom had merely said, “That’s great. How true! Amen. Preach it, brother!” Rather, Jesus’ proclamation of the Kingdom called for a response. It demanded repentance.
The New Living Translation uses the phrase “repent of your sins” to translate the Greek imperative metanoeite. To be sure, repentance involves leaving behind our evil deeds and attitudes. But repentance also includes a new way of thinking and living. To repent is to turn your life around and pursue God and his path. The Gospel of the Kingdom of God calls forth a whole new way of living under the righteous, gracious reign of God.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Have there been times in your life when you have repented? When? Why? How might your life be different if your whole life was “pointed” in God’s direction?
PRAYER: Dear Lord, as I hear the Good News of your reign, may I respond with all that I am. May I believe this Good News. May I trust you as my king. May I leave behind everything in my life that opposes you. May I embrace a new way of living, one that honors you both in word and deed.
Help me, Lord, to live a life of repentance. Every time sin begins to take hold of me, may I turn away and turn toward you. May I seek you with all that I am, living in the newness and joy of your Kingdom. Amen.
Image courtesy of Laity Lodge, one of our sister programs in the Foundations for Laity Renewal.