Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”
When I was a teenager, the parents of one of my friends were square dancers. While the hobby didn’t really rub off on any of us teens, we did go to downtown Tampa a couple of times to watch them, in their coordinated costumes, dance with a couple thousand other couples. It was impressive. I remember a line that the caller used to get the dancers to change direction:
“Going wrong – now let’s go right…”
That phrase popped back into my mind in seminary when I learned that the Greek word used in the Bible for “repent” actually means “changing course” or “turning around.” That’s what Jesus invited people to do at the start of his ministry when he said: “The kingdom of God has come near, repent, and believe the good news.”
When we watch Jesus and catch a glimpse of life in the kingdom (where love, grace, and mercy prevail), we might just realize that we should repent (change course to turn and follow). If we find some point in our lives where we are going wrong, let’s go right.
God, let me look to Jesus today and see how my path might become a little more true. Help the kingdom to come close to me, as I live in the good news of Your love. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
~ Steve Negley