Daily Devotional 4-12-19

Repentance

“Even now,” says the Lord, “Turn and come to Me with all your heart [in genuine repentance], With fasting and weeping and mourning [until every barrier is removed, and the broken fellowship is restored]; Rip your heart to pieces [in sorrow and contrition] and not your garments. “Now return [in repentance] to the Lord your God, For He is gracious and compassionate. Joel 2:12-13 (AMP)
 
For those who like road trips, you probably have missed an exit once or twice and the GPS had to redirect you to the correct path. Life with God is a journey, and at times we are tempted to take wrong turns, but through repentance God redirects us back to the right path.
 
The book of Joel explores the fact that human sin and failure lead to destruction and that God longs to show mercy to those who will confess. In chapter one, the prophet prophesies God’s judgement and calls the nation to repentance, which they did. In our text today, he is calling the people a second time to repentance, because God is compassionate. The prophet reminds them that true repentance comes from the heart and not simply lip service.
 
As we journey with God, it might happen that we take a wrong turn and allow sin (pride, bitterness, unforgiveness, etc.) to creep in. Repentance is our only way back. God is compassionate and merciful and there is no sin He will not forgive. True repentance leads to a restored relationship with God.
 
PRAYERS: Lord, I recognize I have made a wrong turn; I have not pleased you in all my ways. I come with a humble heart and ask for your forgiveness. Cleanse me and lead me back to you.
 
REFLECTION: Where in your life have you strayed from the path? What steps do you need to take towards repentance and a renewed relationship with God?