“A singular moment of conversion that is isolated from the daily work of repentance is an incomplete picture of the life of faith.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 26, 2022
Restore us, O Lord God of hosts; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved! Psalm 80:19, NKJV
I spent my formative years in a Christian culture that placed a great emphasis on evangelism and making a decision for Christ. Through street evangelism, dramas, and crusades, countless hours were spent in the hopes of seeing someone “say yes” to Christ, moving from a life of darkness into the light of his life. Now as an adult follower of Jesus, while I continue to give thanks for this passionate love for those who are far away from Christ, I have come to see this evangelistic zeal as an incomplete picture, telling only part of the story.
In the Psalms, we encounter prayers for salvation and conversion from those, such as King David, who were already converted and in the family of faith! These prayers are not the “sinners prayer” as we may think of that first moment of conversion, but are nonetheless the heartfelt cries of a sinner in need of the mercy of God. And it is this reality that I invite us to reflect upon today in a deeper way.
A singular moment of conversion that is isolated from the daily work of repentance is an incomplete picture of the life of faith.
While everyone’s journey with our Lord must begin by kneeling at the foot of his cross, a lifelong walk of faith is nourished and sustained, not simply by a single prayer of repentance, but by the daily, if not hourly, prayer of the heart: Lord have mercy on me, a sinner.
Perhaps your own conversion to Christ is rooted in a dramatic moment of evangelism, with the Lord finding and drawing you to himself in his great love. Give thanks to God for this part of your story and celebrate the beginning of your story. Tell it to your children and grandchildren! Similarly, if your heart is filled with love for those who are distant from God, continue to share his love and invite others into the great adventure of faith.
However, never lose sight of the fact that a single, momentary “yes” to Jesus is not meant to sustain or nourish a lifetime of faith. As a friend of mine used to ask, “How old are your God stories?” Meaning, is your life with God only defined by a few key moments of faith in the past, or is it also sustained and supported by a daily encounter with the love of God, which deepens in you your own heart of repentance, gratitude, and faith?
Father, help me to turn daily to you, renewing my trust in your loving care, and committing myself afresh to a life of humility and Christlike living. Amen.
How can you more deeply embrace this vision of daily conversion to Christ in your own life today?
Brooke Ligertwood: A Thousand Hallelujahs
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