My favourite book on repentance is: "Repentance, The Joy-Filled Life" by Sister Basilea Schlink. She was living in a badly bombed Germany with few resources, during the war, but it was important for her to repent for Germany's cruel treatment of other nations during the war, especially the Jews. She felt the temptation to marry like other young women did. Instead she gave her mission the first priority, and so she became a Sister of Mary. She gathered a group of women around her, many of which had lost fiance or husband.
She says: "Should we not ask for this gift (of repentance) more than all others? It brings divine life, true life. Hearts that can cry and rejoioce are alive. Only a dead person is incapable of giving any reaction.....He cannot express his joy, and he is unable to weep. However, a person who lives in contrition and repentance has the characteristics of life. He weeps over the one thing that is worth weeping over, since it spells death and terrible judgement for us.....Yes, he weeps over sin....whoever weeps in repentance...weeps aright.
"Yes, those who repent are truly alive...they are grieved over their sins now, so that they can turn over a new leaf and begin to lead a new and a different life...To be spiritually alive is to live in repentance..."
I like the way that Basilea Schlink does not see repentance as a once and for all act, but as a daily action, enabling us to keep short accounts with God. She says it is the foundation of our life, because it is the only proper attitude we can have before God. Jesus called the seven churches in Revelation to repent, because it is the way to the new life, and with repentance the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand, and we can experience life in that Kingdom today. What a great salvation we are blessed with!
Years ago, when I was at Bible College, George Verwer, the founder of Operation Mobilisation came to speak to us. He quoted freely from Basilea Schlink, and urged us to get hold of and read as much of her writings as we could, so I have been collecting her books ever since.
We spent Saturday night in a hotel on the banks of the Thames, and went for a little walk before church yesterday.
We stayed here...
We ate lots of these between us all!
Krispy Kreme Donuts! We even had a Krispy Kreme hat each to wear! It was a lot of fun, and felt like a party! It was a really lovely weekend, didn't want it to end!
Last week, DH and I celebrated our wedding anniversary, I received some beautiful flowers.....
And we had a lovely meal together...
We didn't go out, as we both had a very early start to work in the morning, but it was a lovely evening, and I lit some little red candles that I had bought for our anniversary last year, but hadn't lit them last year as we were staying in a hotel in Ross on Wye, and we didn't want to set off the smoke alarms and evacuate the hotel!
Do have a look at Jewel's blog Eyes of Wonder, as she has been posting this week, which is a cause for celebration, and her writing is always wonderful, warm, homely, inspirational and full of love.
Have a good week my friend.