I am often asked what does it mean to return or turn to the Lord. Some think it is going to church or even writing a check. Here’s what Joel spoke through the authority of God.
That is why the Lord says,
“Turn to me now, while there is time.
Give me your hearts.
Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning.
Don’t tear your clothing in your grief,
but tear your hearts instead.”
Return to the Lord your God,
for he is merciful and compassionate,
slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
He is eager to relent and not punish.
Who knows? Perhaps he will give you a reprieve,
sending you a blessing instead of this curse.
Perhaps you will be able to offer grain and wine
to the Lord your God as before.
(Joel 2:12-14 NLT)
Returning to the Lord is about our hearts first. Often the Lord speaks to our hearts reminding us to come closer. I know I need to return when I can remember a time when I was closer than I am right now. Can you think of a time when you were closer? If so, here is a simple formula to follow:
- Start with your heart, “tear your heart” or become broken hearted about not being close
- Become desperate “cry, weep, lose your appetite “
- Ask for forgiveness
- Seek him like looking for a lost check.
- Offer to Him the sacrifice of something he doesn’t have, my heart.
The prophet says that God is eager to forgive and is rich in mercy. I love the phrase “who knows…” David used this phrase about turning towards the Lord. Let’s all develop a “who knows” lifestyle.