“As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior” 1 Peter 1:14-15
“Search me, O God, and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts!
And see if there be any grievous way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23 ESV
I believe that if we consistently pray this prayer and listen for what He would reveal to us, many of the grievous ways (or in other translations “any hurtful way” or “way of pain”) would be dealt with much more quickly and not be given the space and power to fester into more painful circumstances.
If we were more serious about sin, if we were more serious about allowing God to search our hearts, confessing our sin, repenting, being cleansed and changed, we would live in so much more confidence and purity and victory.
And, friend, the world needs us to live in that pure, loving, bold confidence.
May this be a reminder to keep short accounts with God, to confess our sins, to repent, to turn to Him, and in dependence upon the power of the Holy Spirit “bear fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3:8).
Repentance will change our conduct, our behavior, our way of daily living. It’s a change of mind that impacts our behavior. A repentant life will produce evidence consistent with that change of heart.
“...repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.” Acts 26:20
You cannot be too serious in dealing with a Holy God or too serious in dealing with sin.
May we allow the Lord God to search us daily and, in His great kindness, to do whatever it takes to lead us to a repentance that changes our direction, where we change our mind about any sin that we have allowed in our lives and we follow the Lord Jesus Christ fully.
“For this the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has said,
‘In repentance and rest you will be saved,
In quietness and trust is your strength.’
But you were not willing” Isaiah 30:15
Repentance, rest, quietness, trust: may we be a people willing!
“Therefore, repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” Acts 3:19
Spend some time with the Lord today asking Him to search you and to convict you of any and all sin. Repent. And ask that He make you holy in all your behavior. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you and do His work in and through you.
Here’s a phrase that the Lord first spoke to my heart in 2012: “Holiness and radical obedience will be your covering.” It was spoken in the context of the spiritual battle that the church is in, and it has been a phrase that He has spoken over and over in my journals since. Our holiness and our obedience are so important and serious.