Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord… – Acts 3:19
In Acts 3 we learn that a time of refreshing is the immediate comfort we can expect when we repent and accept Christ as our Savior. Where does this sense of refreshing come from? It comes from being in the presence of the Lord; from the Holy Spirit. Our sins are wiped out and we receive a refreshing from the Lord? This is beautiful and powerful exchange for our sin.
Does this mean we repent once and that sense of refreshing is always present? No. In our human nature, we want our actions to follow a genuine heart to change but we will fail. It is crucial for us to continually turn back to God, remember all that He has done for us, and hold onto the anchor of His hope.
One way we can do this is to praise God regardless of how we feel emotionally, by bringing what the book of Hebrews calls a ‘sacrifice of praise’ (Hebrews 13:15). As revivalist Thomas Charles of Bala, wrote in 1791 ‘those who have struck the deepest note of penitence can reach the highest note of praise.’
Take a moment to remember when you first met Jesus and the sense of ‘refreshing’ that came with finding joy in the Lord in the midst your circumstances, past failures and hurt.