In my last post, “Freedom in Our Brokenness,” I talked about my realization of what it means to be broken. The guilt that I faced because of my sin was an indication of this brokenness. Yet, despite still being a broken individual, I no longer live with the constant guilt that I did three years ago.
This is because I shifted my focus from my actions to Christ—the one who came to save a fallen humanity. He is the only one who can save us from the brokenness that we experience in our day to day lives. However, I don’t want to make it seem as if this shift is an easy thing. I want to pose this question:
What does it look like to truly turn towards Christ?
Acts 3:19-20 says, “Therefore repent and turn back, so that your sins may be wiped outso that seasons of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and He may send Jesus, who has been appointed Messiah for you.”
To repent is to acknowledge and express the sin that is in your life, and turn back to Christ, the one who wiped out our sins. Christ is the one who makes us clean, the one who refreshes us. In Him, we are free because we are no longer trying to atone for our own sins because Christ paid that price for us when He died on the cross.
That being said, turning to Christ is not a one and done deal. Yes, once you repent and give your life to Christ, he has forgiven you of your sin—past, present, and future. However, following Christ is so much more than a single moment. God created us to be in relationship with him, and that is what it should look like when we turn to Christ, a relationship.
Think about it. I believe we can all agree that our ideas of a relationship have drastically changed since middle school. When I was in middle school, I had a few boys pass me notes that read “Do you want to be my girlfriend? Check yes or no.” I always (sorry boys) checked no, however if I had chosen differently, I’m sure that our “relationship” wouldn’t go anywhere beyond the title of “boyfriend” and “girlfriend.”
We wouldn’t go on dates, deeply get to know one another, and I honestly doubt we would even hang out at school. I think, and hope that others would agree that this is not what dating should look like. So why would we ever treat our relationship with God, our creator and savior, like we would a middle school relationship?
I think to truly turn towards Christ, we have to take the time to get to know him, intimately and personally. This means pursing Him in all that we do every single day. We can no longer seek to control the factors of our lives by ourselves, but rather we need to hand them over to God. We must relinquish our doubts, fears, and dreams to Him, knowing that He will do more with them than we ever could. We cannot turn towards Christ in one moment in time alone. When we repent and give our lives to God we are giving Him everything and committing to live a life that will glorify Him.
One of my favorite songs is the song “Relent” by Citizens. I often sing this chorus on days when it feels particularly hard to turn away from the sin in my life, and I encourage you to do the same:
I relent, there is nothing for me here
You can have it all, this life is not my own
You give life that is worth the loss of mine
I surrender all I have to follow You