"Then Hezekiah repented of the pride of his heart, as did the people of Jerusalem; therefore the Lord's wrath did not come upon them during the days of Hezekiah" (2 Chr. 32:26, NIV).
The journey back to where you find the presence of Jesus involves passing through some important stages, one of which is repentance. In part, repentance means admitting you were wrong.
We seldom come to the place of saying "I was wrong" until we are forced to do so. The natural inclination in all of us is to defend where we are and why.
God has to get your attention before you will repent, and He gets it by making you see what you have lost. As long as you can feel you haven't really lost His special presence, you are going to carry on.
There are two ways by which you are called to repentance:
- You admit God's special presence is gone. Rather than continue as though nothing happened, you repent.
- You get caught—exposed. Someone discovers the truth. Public shame results.
- If you do not admit that God's special presence is gone and repent, God resorts to the second plan. When a person repents because of public exposure, the depth of the repentance remains an open question.
- To be granted repentance is a gracious mercy of God. As the Word teaches us, we are "changed...from glory to glory" as a result of repentance (2 Cor. 3:18, KJV). When a renewed measure of His Spirit reveals your sin and leads to your forgiveness, you have received insight. The worst thing that can happen to a man or a woman is to become stone-deaf to the Holy Spirit, losing all sensitivity to His voice. The way back is the way of repentance.