Saturday, January 13, 2007

I'll Change!!! I PROMISE!

Posted by Hannah at 6:12 PM



Link to the photobucket artist that made this neat print above!!
I hear alot of people question - have they changed, and how to we know?? I think this Pastor has a good list I wanted to share!!

Link to Full Article

How do you know if you're on the path of repentance? What does the penitent life look like? How can you tell if someone you love is really changing? People who are serious about change tend to display similar behaviors that let you know they are on the right track. Here are a few signs you'll find in a truly repentant person:

1. Repentant people are willing to confess all their sins, not just the sins that got them in trouble. A house isn't clean until you open every closet and sweep every corner. People who truly desire to be clean are completely honest about their lives. No more secrets.

2. Repentant people face the pain that their sin caused others. They invite the victims of their sin (anyone hurt by their actions) to express the intensity of emotions that they feel-anger, hurt, sorrow, and disappointment. Repentant people do not give excuses or shift blame. They made the choice to hurt others, and they must take full responsibility for their behavior.

3. Repentant people ask forgiveness from those they hurt. They realize that they can never completely "pay off" the debt they owe their victims. Repentant people don't pressure others to say, "I forgive you." Forgiveness is a journey, and the other person needs time to deal with the hurt before they can forgive. All that penitent people can do is admit their indebtedness and humbly request the undeserved gift of forgiveness.

4. Repentant people remain accountable to a small group of mature Christians. They gather a group of friends around themselves who hold them accountable to a plan for clean living. They invite the group to question them about their behaviors. And they follow the group's recommendations regarding how to avoid temptation.

5. Repentant people accept their limitations. They realize that the consequences of their sin (including the distrust) will last a long time, perhaps the rest of their lives. They understand that they may never enjoy the same freedom that other people enjoy. Sex offenders or child molesters, for example, should never be alone with children. Alcoholics must abstain from drinking. Adulterers must put strict limitations on their time with members of the opposite sex. That's the reality of their situation, and they willingly accept their boundaries.

6. Repentant people are faithful to the daily tasks God has given them. We serve a merciful God who delights in giving second chances. God offers repentant people a restored relationship with Him and a new plan for life. Listen to Hosea's promise to rebellious Israel:

Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence. (Hosea 6:1-2, emphasis added)

After healing comes living. Repentant people accept responsibility for past failures but do not drown themselves in guilt. They focus their attention on present responsibilities, which include accomplishing the daily tasks God has given them.

One final thought. Repentance is not a solo effort. God doesn't expect us to lift ourselves up by our own bootstraps. Through His indwelling Spirit, God shapes and molds us to make us pure and blameless in Christ. Listen to Paul's hopeful words: "for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose" (Philippians 2:13). For many people, the first cry of repentance is, "I can't change by myself; I need You, God." Thankfully, those are the sweetest words to God's ear.


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3 comments:

Barbara on 10:47 PM said...

what a GREAT find!!!

I am pinching it from you (with attribution of course!)

Anonymous said...

Though it is difficult to understand why, God will often use adultery to bring His lost child back into relationship with Him. Understanding that there is an eternal "purpose" at stake for the soul of the adulterer may help the victim see that their forgiveness and willingness to listen to God's command to reconcile the marriage may give them a sense of peace to know that God makes no mistakes and that they were stragically placed in their spouse's life to show them the Agape love of God.

h on 6:30 PM said...

God shows Apage love in its true form, and only he can do that! We will always fall short, and placing your life in God's hand is the job of the individual. We can't place the burden of that on others, and we need be very careful of that!

People's life can be transformed as you placed it here...AMEN TO THAT as well! Sadly, reconcilation in the form in which you speak is not always possible or safe to do! God knows this as well, and since we speak of abuse here on this board we need to remember that God is not to be tested in fashion!

Repentance such in the fashion that is descibed in this article is one awesome start to what you have mentioned! Reconcilation has different forms as well, and we must keep that in mind as well.

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