To Repent

Series: Week of Prayer and Fasting | Week 1: Why We Pray and Fast

During this first week of 2024, we’re entering a time of prayer and fasting as a church. In Daily Bible Reading, you’ll have the opportunity to hear from a different campus pastor each day, guiding you through the various reasons why we fast and pray. Today, you’ll hear from Northwest Campus Pastor Marshall Hawn. For more information on Prayer + Fasting Week, visit

Note: We accidentally began our Daily Bible Reading a day early for the Week of Prayer + Fasting. Today, we’re revisiting the topic of repentance and will pick back up with the remaining guides tomorrow!

Read Joel 2:12-13 in your personal Bible or at the link provided.


  1. When does God call us to turn to Him?
  2. What does He ask us to bring?
  3. How do we do that?


Repentance is a central element of fasting and of following Jesus. When Jesus begins His ministry on earth, His opening message is "repent and believe the Good News." Every spiritual awakening that has ever occurred begins with individual and collective repentance.

To repent is to turn. It's to admit that you are going in the wrong direction, own the mistake and turn around. This implies action.

Repentance, therefore, is more than feeling sorry or even saying "I'm sorry." It's expressing genuine remorse to God and others through the action of turning around and walking toward God.

This is why fasting is a central component of repentance. It embodies a conscious decision to change. It is impossible to fast in theory. Only in action.

Therefore, as we practice a lifestyle of daily turning away from our wicked ways and choosing to follow Jesus, fasting conditions our bodies and minds to consciously choose Jesus over self.

As the Lord says through the prophet Joel, we turn to God by giving Him our entire selves, and we do that, in part, bit by bit, through the regular practice of fasting.

As followers of Jesus, we are called to a daily lifestyle of repentance. Right now, "while there is still time," what are the habits, attitudes, thoughts, words or behaviors you need to repent of?


As you fast, admit to God the areas in your life in which you need to "turn around." Then, as Jesus Himself says in Mark 1:15, "Repent of your sins and believe the Good News." The Good News is this: You are a child of God. Even though you are more sinful and broken than you want to admit, God loves you more than you can possibly imagine! If necessary, confess to someone you know and trust and begin living in the freedom that repentance brings!

For more information and resources on our week of prayer and fasting, visit

Week of Prayer and Fasting