Thursday, June 3, 2010

i made up a word for this post...

i've been mulling on the concept of repentance and what that looks like in my life.

let me just say this first: our god is mindblowingly faithful.

i've been reading a lot of spurgeon lately as i've previously shared. reading through his works on his "experiences after conversion", this sentence struck me and i've been chewing on it pretty much non-stop:

"I have found, in my own spiritual life, that the more rules I lay down for myself, the more sins I committ."

i couldn't have said it better myself. i feel like spurgeon had the exact same thought as i'm having - some 150 years earlier. i read that sentence and actually got excited - not because the message is great in an upbeat, pumped for life kind of way, but because i can relate exponentially. i'm a rule maker and list follower - at times i have lists of my "to do" lists - and there's some great structure that's found in these tendencies i have to organization, but there's a lot of potential for legalism, defeat, condemnation and further sin. one stumble into sin often perpetuates a slide into another.

which leads to repentance. today i realized that i kind of have categories for the sins i struggle with - and when i give into sin it's almost like i put it into a category in my mind and repent of that particular sin, praying i will not stumble with that one again - that i will turn from it. but really, i think those categories are "man-made" structures i've erected in my mind; my repentance is not to be categorical, purposed to work in one area independently. rather, my repentance in a moment or time of sin struggle is to move me away from that moment, action, thought, etc so that the rest of the day i'm moving back towards christ with him as my pursuit... my heart is changing and inclining closer and deeper into him.

it's not about behaviour modification. or cleaning up categories of my life. or struggles on an individual basis.

it's about my heart. that deceitful place. that wellspring of life. such a paradoxical concept.

repentance that is purposed to clean up an area of my behaviour only perpetuates the cycle of sin in my life - because repentance is about heart - not action!

my doing flows out of my being. repentance is about my being, not my doing.

our god is mindblowingly faithful.

i'm still mulling it over... and open for thoughts