Prayer When You Need to Believe the Good News
By Betsy de Cruz

“Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” Mark 1:14 – 15  

This may sound blasphemous, but I don’t like the word repentance. Perhaps I don’t like to think of my own sin. I’d rather think of myself as someone who has it all together than someone who desperately needs God’s mercy. Wouldn’t you? Surely, repentance is for thieves, drug dealers, and murderers, right? Not for good people like us. 

Yet Jesus’ first recorded message in Mark begins with: “The kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”

Jesus calls us not only to repent but also to believe. We must believe Jesus died for our sin so we can turn to Him for forgiveness. Repentance ushers us into God’s kingdom, but it also paves the way to closer fellowship with God every day of our Christian lives. When we turn from our sin, unbelief, and desperate attempts to control our lives, we humble ourselves and make room for God to work in us. 

Maybe each morning is a new opportunity to repent and believe. Consider the CEV translation of Mark 1:15, which puts Jesus’ first message in everyday English: “Turn back to God and believe the good news!” When we repent, we not only turn away from sin towards God; we also turn away from unbelief to choose faith, and we open the door for God to renew our hearts.

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What good news do you need to believe? Perhaps you need to believe your loving Creator rejoices in you and sees the righteousness of Christ when He looks at you. You might need to believe His promises to show you steadfast love and faithfulness, or maybe you need to remind yourself His power can do far more than you can ask for or imagine.

Each day is a new opportunity to repent from unbelief, turn to the Scriptures, and choose to believe the promises and encouragement we find in our Bibles. Let’s ask God to remake us and renew our minds today.

Let’s pray:

Lord Jesus, I choose to repent and believe today. Forgive me for trying to handle life on my own and forgetting your presence and power. Forgive me for relying on myself rather than trusting You. Forgive me for fearing the worst instead of resting in faith. I choose to believe your goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life because you have said so in your Word. 

Lord, Your Word says I am your beloved child, living under Your watchful care. The Bible says You promise to show me steadfast love and faithfulness all the days of my life. You are my Shepherd and Guide; You will make a way for me. Scripture says the same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in me. I have a Helper today and the hope of everlasting life with you. 

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