Repentance and faith can be understood as "two sides of the same coin." The term repentance, from the Greek word metanoia, means "turning from sin." The biblical definition of repentance often is interpreted more as "change one's mind." Regardless of exact personal definitions of repentance, many Christians believe it is nearly impossible to place faith in Jesus Christ as the Savior without first changing one's mind about who He is and what He has done.
Repentance is not a work Christians do to earn salvation because salvation is possible as a result of God's grace. However, there are steps Christians can take to seek or remain close to repentance as part of one's lifestyle.
This year's National Week of Repentance is April 3-10. This observance started as a grassroots movement initiated by Godfactor Founder and Grace Fellowship Lead Pastor Michael Anthony Paolicelli in York, Pa. For the 2016 week, he asks Judeo-Christian individuals, families and houses of worship to humble themselves in prayer, genuine confession, apologies, forgiveness and true repentance, instead of pointing accusing fingers at each other and at Washington, D.C.
Christians are encouraged to get involved by going online to the nonprofit organization established by Paolicelli, revivalmatters, to produce an "It is Time" selfie challenge video on social media, downloading free action guides and by participating in live-stream broadcasts of Paolicelli teaching in-depth messages and practical suggestions to help people repent wherever they are.
Live-stream dates and times are: April 3, 2016 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. -12:15 p.m. EST; April 3, 2016 at 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. EST; April 6, 2016 at 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. EST; and April 10, 2016 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. -12:15 p.m. EST
"Real revival starts with each of us," said Paolicelli. "2 Chronicles 7:13-14 makes it clear that true revival and spiritual awakening are the greatest need at this key time in America's history and future. It's a burden of mine and I feel it's absolutely urgent!"
The pastor, radio host and revival historian said he became discouraged with all the complaints about U.S. moral decline, racial unrest, financial collapse, fear, hatred and void of leadership, which he believed to be mere symptoms of a larger spiritual problem plaguing the nation's soul.
"We've lost our way," says Paolicelli. "Our nation is a collection of broken things -- lives, families and houses of worship. It's time for healing restoration and genuine spiritual awakening."
Special materials also were created for pastors and rabbis to assist with leading congregations through a repentance process.
With an inspiring comeback story that involved three kidnapping attempts against him and several brushes with death, including a battle overcoming cancer, Paolicelli is passionate about exponential replication and helping people multiply their efforts by teaching others to excel in loving God, surrendering to Him like never before.
Repentance can be as straightforward as genuinely regretting one's past wrongs, and admitting that guilt to God. In essence, it is the change from the inside out. Repentance appears prominently in the Scriptures.