"On the day I cleanse you from all your sins, I will resettle your towns, and the ruins will be rebuilt. The desolate land will be cultivated instead of lying desolate in the sight of all who pass through it. They will say, "This land that was laid waste has become like the garden of Eden; the cities that were lying in ruins, desolate and destroyed, are now fortified and inhabited."
You gotta' love God's words to Israel here. "On the day that I forgive you...something amazing is going to happen." Not only will God forvgive...but on that very day, everything changes. New life that they experience personally, spiritually, will overflow and impact everything around them. Towns will be resettled, ruins rebuilt, wasteland cultivated and sown with new crops and beauty restored. From desolate to the Garden of Eden!
Because when God changes your life - he changes it in a big way. Have you experienced the transforming power of God's forgiveness? If so, what has changed about the rest of your life and the lives of people around you? See, a lot of people pray a sinners prayer and then happily carry on with life as usual. But a heart truly submitted to God, a heart that is broken and contrite before him experiences transformational forgiveness on a level that is stratospheric. Nothing stays the same. Ruined lives are rebuilt, broken relationships restored, outlook is brighter and more hopeful, and actions radically different. A new creation in Christ. The old is gone, the new has come.
So what kind of transformation has happened in my life and is happening in my life and my community because of what God is doing in me? What about you?
It's a good question.