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Matthew 3 - Say it like you mean it!


We all have a habit, attitude or mentality that we need to turn away from. We either know and have known for awhile, have some inclination as to what it might be or are completely oblivious of the flaws that others so naturally see.

Matthew 3 introduces us to a guy who had a very simple message and seemed to have dedicated his whole life to making sure as many people hear it as possible. ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand’. He calls the hearer to action and gives them a clear reason for this needed action.
What did this word mean and what made it so important that this guy dedicated his whole life to sharing this message.

According to googles dictionary, 'repent' is a verb (doing/action word) which means;

1. to ‘feel or express sincere regret or remorse about one’s wrongdoing or sin’.
2. to view or think of an action or omission with deep regret or remorse

Whilst growing up I found that I was usually only sorry when I got caught. And this was usually only because of the consequences I was about to face. If I'm honest, I think my feeling of regret and remorse was linked more to the fact that I had got caught more than anything else - I regretted that I should have been smarter at calculating all the potential hiccups.

I remember being allowed to go home by myself after a school club in primary school. The instructions were simple - “as soon as your club is finished, go straight to your Aunts house and I will collect you from there”. Straight meant no stopping as there was no reason to. 

I must have been in year 5 or 6 and my Auntie’s house was roughly 10 minutes away from school. There were only 2 roads for me to cross so this should have been a rather easy instruction for me to follow. Nonetheless, I decided to stop of in the shop next door to my school with my friends on the first day. I remember looking around before going in but I forgot to look up (I lived across the road from school and it never dawned on me that someone could have been watching from the window) - armature move!


That evening after my mum picked me up and we had got home, my dad asked me if I had gone to the shop today after my club - I had come to know that if you were being asked such a question it was because you had already been caught; so I just came out with the truth and said sorry and peacefully accepted my punishment.


I did go back to shop on my way home but this time I was just careful enough to look up and leave a few weeks between my trips.


As I look back at my childhood it was rear for me to be sorry about my wrong doings. And as a teenager it was close to nonexistent. It wasn’t until I became aware of the impact my behaviour was having on those around me e.g. the pain and the disappointment caused that I thought it maybe a good idea for me to change my behaviour. 


Genesis 6:6 is the first place the word repent is used in the Bible. 

"And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart." KJV


Another translation says,

"And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart."


To repent simply means to be sorry. Your being sorry though, has to lead to an action point that makes a difference.


But how do we feel sorry for something that we are not actually sorry for?


"Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?"

How do I repent - We can only repent once we’ve seen how good God has been to us...
Make a list

Why is it important for us to repent?

What if I don’t know what I should be repenting for - god search me and try my heart Ps 139:23-24

Journal Time!

Make a list of the things God has done for you over the years.

For an extra challenge think/write about times when you have done something negative and didn't get the negative consequence you deserved.


Ask God to search you and show you the areas in your life that need a new direction. 

Your awareness may not come straight away but be sure to take not of what's happening around you x


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