Some people have a misunderstanding of what true repentance is. Repentance is not “perfection” but a change in direction.
Jesus told a parable of “The Lost Son” and this explains it best. Luke 15:11, 12 – Then He said, “A certain man had two sons. (Verse 12) “And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the portion of goods that falls to me.’ So he divided to them his livelihood.
The younger son wanted his inheritance before his father had even died. The father granted his request.
Verse 13 says, “And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living. (One translation says he spent his money on partying and prostitutes.)
Verse 14 – “But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in the land, and he began to be in want. (Verse 15) “Then he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. (Verse 16) “And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the swine ate, and no one gave him anything. (Verse 17) “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
The young man made a decision. He wasn’t going to sit there and have nothing when he knew everyone at his father’s house was fed and had plenty.
Verse 18, ‘I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father I have sinned against heaven and before you, (Verse 19) and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.” ‘
Repentance is much more than a change of attitude, a change of mine, and a change of heart; it will lead a person to “act” on what they believe, to turn around and go in a new direction. There will be a transformation. That transformation should not fade with time or the stresses of life that comes our way. A truly repentant person will grow stronger in the Lord and others will see their fruit of a repentant heart.