Repent! What is that?
Let’s put first things first. In order for one to repent, one must know they have sin in their life. Most of us have no problem with that requirement. But you must first be conscious of that sin. Do you know if you violate any of the Ten Commandments?
You shall have no other Gods before Me. Do you believe in God? Has other ‘things’ become your God?
You shall not make false idols. Do you worship sex, money, pride?
You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain. Do you curse God, fail to worship Him?
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Do you go to church every Sunday?
Honor your father and your mother. Do you honor and show respect to your father and mother?
You shall not murder. Do you kill, not just taking human life but with words against other souls?
You shall not commit adultery. Do you cheat on your spouse or have lust for others in your heart?
You shall not steal. Do you ever take anything that belongs to others?
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Do you lie and gossip about others?
You shall not covet. Do you desire other’s goods, become jealous, and want to keep up with Jones?
If you can see these sins within you, then they are mortal. They will destroy you. Your soul will forever be an accomplice with the evil one who does not have your benefit in mind. Does gloom, doom, bad luck, disappointment, sadness, and depression follow you around in life? Do you participate with them in wounding others? These are your reward from the devil for your violation of the Commandments of God. Don’t believe me. Step back and take an evaluation of your own life. Examine all of your hurts and disappointments for as far back as you can remember. Can you see that you and evil were cooperating in your malaise? How do you overcome this pitiful condition? Humble yourself and admit your transgression, then ask God for forgiveness and know in your heart that God will never hold you accountable for them again. God has forgot about your sins after repentance and so should you. Then ask pardon from the person who you transgressed or sinned against, face to face if possible. Then it is done. Don’t ever bring up or remember that sin again. God doesn’t. Your burdens will be lifted. It’s as if a large stone that was tied around your neck has been cut loose. Repentance is the recognition of the disappointment and setbacks in your life and the discovery of the source of these downfalls. They are always man made and instigated by the evil one. Repentance allows you to see their development, progression and final outcome. Your free will has allowed the devil to become your God. Some of us turn into the antichrist himself. When this happens, your journey back, if ever, becomes a long, narrow cutback. But Repentance can provide the road-map home. Just as you allowed evil to gain control of your life, so can you allow the Holy Spirit to invade your soul and begin the repair. Just as evil spirits exist so does good spirits. When the Holy Spirit becomes a reality in your life and you turn to him when confronted with evil after repentance, avoidance of sin becomes easier and easier after each confrontation. Reality of good becomes real and it is a stark contrast to evil. Your awareness is sharpened and the battle on the other side of the veil between good and evil becomes discernable. Then you know that you have mastered the evil one. All future confrontations are much easier to win.
So you say that you never violate any of the ten commandments of the Old Testament. How about the two commandments of the New Testament: love God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength and love your neighbor as yourself. These two are your next step in your progression to repair and fortify your soul. These two commands are much harder to master, however. There violations produce anger, lust, hatred, gossip, jealousy, distrust, resentment, addictions, aggression, animosity, approval-seeking, arrogance, backbiting, bigotry, blasphemy, boastfulness, complaining, condemnation, conceit, conniving, contempt, contradiction, criticism, cursing, deceit, deception, despair, deviance, disrespect, disobedient, doubt, envy, evil desire, exaggeration, fame –seeking, fear, folly, fornication, gluttony, greed, grudges, impatience, ingratitude, insult, perversion, pessimism, pornography, prejudice, pride, profanity, promiscuity, resentment, revenge, ridicule, sarcasm, self-centeredness, self-doubt, selfishness, shame, shyness, sloth, spite, unkindness, vindictiveness, and worry. The list could go on and on. The point is that these negative and destructive traits sometime become controlling and overbearing. If they take possession of your life, your free will and soul become compromised. You lose connection with the good spirits and the evil spirits begin to control your life. Ever wonder why gloom, doom, bad luck, disappointment, sadness, and depression follow you around in life? The answer is because you allow it. Your continued violation of the two New Testament commands allows evil to rear its ugly head and the result is the production and growth of all these negative and destructive traits. So the question becomes, as a practical matter, how do I get rid of these evil and resulting destructive traits? You must conform your mind to good. What does that means? Every single time you detect or realize that you are exposed to, operating in or come under the influence of one of these destructive traits, immediately switch your mind to the opposite and resultant good quality. For example, as soon as you experience an incident that could cause anger, calm yourself and seek joy, kindness, love, peace, pleasure and happiness instead. This process takes place in your mind and it will influence your soul. You must re-train your mind from the bad habits of the past. Your soul will gradually heal and eventually permanently rid itself of these negative traits. What benefit is it to you to live this way, you may ask. The gloom, doom, bad luck, disappointment, sadness, and depression disappears. Happiness, joy and loving-kindness manifest themselves. Have you ever experienced moments or extended periods of time that many be described as mental bliss, on top of the world, or a million bucks. You will be able to live most of your life this way from here to eternity when you conform your mind to good.
Listen to the command of the apostle Peter in 1 Peter 1:13-16. “Rid your minds, then, of every encumbrance, keep full mastery of your senses, and set your hopes on the gracious gift that is offered you when Jesus Christ appears. Obedience should be native to you now; you must not retain the mold of your former untutored appetites. No, it is a holy God who has called you, and you too must be holy in all the ordering of your lives; you must be holy, the scripture says, because I am holy.”