I use to think about it a lot.


That one word.  And all of its connotations.

About what it looked like and what it talked like and what it sounded like.

I don’t think about it so much any longer.

For a whole host of reasons.

But the biggest (and the best) reason is this.

I don’t need to think about it.

A friend reminded me of something, spoke it in a way that my heart could understand.

And his words resonated.  They stayed.

I love particulars.  Plans.  Lists.  How To.  A formula and an agenda and a purpose.  Give me all of those.  A blue print.  The rules.

Signs and symptoms.  What to look for and how it tastes.

But this friend, he said – “You don’t need a list of what to look for.  When repentance is genuine, you’ll know it.  It’ll be obvious.”

His words didn’t settle right away.

But now I think they have.

Repentance is not a read these instructions sort of occasion.  It’s not a list of do this, say that.

And you cannot fake it.

Not really.

And it goes both ways.

When I know I need to repent – I’ll know what to do and how to do it.

I’ve seen this played out in big and small ways – like today, with my children, after I responded to them in an unpleasant manner.  I knew what needed to be done.  And I knew how to do it.

Likewise, I believe,

when repentance walks into my life, I’ll recognize its face.