If there were “frequent walker miles” the Apostle Paul would have to be a tier 1, A-list, gold card member! In The Book of Acts we see him going all over the ancient world. He traveled to the many cities including Corinth, Thessalonica, Antioch, Rome, Jerusalem and Damascus. He was an amazing man; highly educated and cultured he was an accomplished and persuasive public speaker able to tailor his presentation to his audience. Regardless of the language he was speaking or the nationality of his audience, his message was always the same:
I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you publicly and from house to house, solemnly testifying to both Jews and Greeks of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. Acts 20: 21,22
Repentance – turning away from sin, asking God for forgiveness, changing my mind about Jesus (no longer rejecting Him but accepting Him) and turning toward God.
Faith in Jesus Christ – fully God and fully man, Jesus is the only one who was capable of paying the penalty of death our sin deserved and conquering death.
True repentance changes everything, my mind, heart, life, words, and actions. True repentance enables me to view others with humility and not judgment because I have a correct view of myself in relationship to God. True repentance will cause me to worship and obey God, not because I have to but because I sincerely want to demonstrate my love.
Faith in Jesus gives me irrevocable security; I know my eternity in heaven is guaranteed. I don’t have to worry if I am “good enough” for God – I am because Jesus is! I change from a sometimes self-confident woman to a “God-confident” woman, knowing that Jesus is my sustainer. Covered by Christ, I abandon shaky self-esteem for “God-esteem”; He sees me as worthy and dearly loved and His view of me does not depend on my accomplishments, looks, failures or successes or any other temporary condition.
Repentance and Faith are unique and foundational to Christianity and God must draw you to both!
No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. John 6:44
God will gently and persistently draw you to Himself; He takes the first ninety-nine steps towards us – we, individually and personally, need to take one single step towards Him. But it is the important and necessary step of repentance and faith.
The church you attend or don’t attend, your style of dress, the language you speak, decisions and choices in your past, none of these matter. Everything about the Christian Life flows from true repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. The two-fold step of repentance and faith is unbelievably simple but not always easy and it all begins with God’s grace; grace in granting repentance, grace in the person of Jesus, grace that redeems and grace that forgives. Step into grace, step towards God!