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March 10 – Heartfelt preparation

…because your heart was penitent…I also have heard you, declares the Lord.” – 2 Kings 22:19

Scripture reading: 2 Kings 22:1-20

A major part of our faith and our response to God is found in our inner life. People around us hear our words and see our actions, but God alone reads our hearts. When we stifle our deep and powerful heartfelt feelings toward God, we do ourselves spiritual damage. That is certainly true when it comes to repentance. Those who deaden their hearts, deny their inner struggles and train themselves to be unfeeling, have great difficulty here, because repentance involves our total being as we turn away from the world and toward the Lord Jesus Christ. We see this in 2 Kings 22.

The Law of the Lord convicted King Josiah of his sin and the sin of his people. The king had a reaction. Outwardly he tore his clothes, a public action and custom of his day. That outward action, however, was not merely a custom, rather it was the result of what was going on in the heart of the king. His heart was truly penitent as he wept. He humbled himself before the Lord. His outward actions were a reflection of his inner struggle of soul and of his repentance.

In a few weeks, we will mark Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter. Many will outwardly celebrate with chocolate bunnies and coloured Easter eggs and nothing more. God grant that our celebration be far different! May all that Christ Jesus accomplished move us deeply. Like Josiah, let us turn to the Lord with penitent hearts. The Lord Jesus receives the penitent in His overflowing grace!

Suggestions for prayer: Express your sincere penitence with prayer that humbly seeks the Lord’s forgiveness. Seek His divine help to banish pride, worldliness and stubbornness from your heart and life.

Rev. Gregg V. Martin was ordained to the Gospel ministry in 1977. In his years of service, he pastored a total of five congregations in three Canadian provinces. He also served for more than seven years in Latin America as a missionary, providing leadership training in Reformed mission churches. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at  

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