One of God’s Greatest Gifts: Repentance


Guess it goes without saying that our granddaughter is rarely in the background, and for good reason!

On those rare occasions, however, when she realizes we’re not tuned in to her every word it doesn’t take long for her attention-antenna to intercept with two words that snap me back into full attention mode: Meeee-me! Meeee-me! (i.e. Grammy)  

You would be hard-pressed to find words that so quickly melt this heart but I was reminded of another one during yesterday’s sermon on discipleship: repentance. Yes, it can be painful and heart wrenching but it is a powerful and magnificent gift made possible by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. 

As children of God, our attention antenna need never rise because His Word assures us that we never escape His notice. When we call out to our Father, He leans in to hear His children and stands ready to forgive and cleanse those who desire to turn away from their sin. It’s not about getting our act together or becoming more religious, for both come up empty—but it is about becoming humble and real on an ongoing basis before a living, loving, active, and holy God who desires His best for His children. 

“The mark of a true disciple is joyful and regular acceptance of 
God’s gracious gift of repentance.” -Kyle Estepp

purpose of this blog is to share snippets of life and truth along the
way. To listen to our sermon series on discipleship and this week’s
sermon on repentance, please visit Summit’s site. It should be posted by Wednesday.)

When A Pinch Spells Love

Mr. Rice was a close friend of my grandparents and the local elementary school principal way back when. He’d often stop by their home for a quick visit, to the delight of my grandparents. My reaction as a seven year-old, however, was quite different. I’d make a run for the bathroom, lock the door, and sit on the edge of my grandparent’s pink tub until I heard his old pick-up crank. He was as nice as they come, but he had a habit of pinching my cheeks so hard they’d leave marks on my face for minutes. His pinches spelled P. A. I. N. and I wanted no part of them. 

Yesterday morning, I turned the radio off, peeled back the roof and talked with the Lord on my way to church. At one point, when asking for forgiveness, the word “lazy” spilled from my lips. It caught me off guard. So much so that I proceeded to say “Well, I don’t know if that’s the right word or not, Lord. I hope it’s not.” 

Fast forward about an hour. 

Our pastor, Jason, was speaking PREACHIN’ on discipleship. It was the best sermon I’ve ever heard on the subject and we’re only in our first week of the series! At one point, when sharing why some lack the transformation desired in their lives, he asked Could it be that you’re simply lazy? (I can’t quote it verbatim because I was too busy thanking the Holy Spirit for making it perfectly clear that I HAVE been lazy in certain areas of my walk with the Lord.) It’s not something I wanted confirmed, but I desperately needed a pinch of clarity and conviction. 

Like Mr. Rice, the Holy Spirit’s pinches can unleash a sharp pain. Not physically, but spiritually. His pinch, however, always spells L.O.V.E.—even when it hurts—for His pinches also leave a mark. An indelible mark. The mark of Christ. 

For the Lord disciplines the one he loves…
Hebrews 12:6
The gospel is not opposed to effort [spiritual disciplines, serving, etc.] but it is opposed to earning
-From today’s sermon

True Marks of A Disciple

Sunday Snippets from Mark 8 
  • Our discipleship in Jesus Christ is essential to others coming to know Jesus. 
  • There is nothing passive about being a disciple of Jesus. 
  • Discipleship isn’t about taking a class. The cost of following Jesus: Your life. The reward of following Jesus: True life. 

Verses 34-38, Jesus says:

Deny yourself. Do we believe our issues are more important than others? Do we deny ourselves anything for the glory of God or do we bow to the god of self-centeredness?

Take up your cross. Jesus asks Are you willing to say you’re with Me? It’s in My death that you’ll find true life. 

Follow Me. Keep following me…daily. If you want to follow Me, your life will be about investing in the lives of others. Is the beauty of what God has done for you in Jesus leading you to lead a life less self-centered? 

The above snippets come nowhere close to doing Jason Malone’s sermon justice but is there one particular snippet that resonates with you this Monday morning? 

To listen to Sunday’s sermon (3/10) in its entirety, please visit Summit online.


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