This song was written in response to the argument that “I did it my way” is
an appropriate epitaph to a life well spent.
It wasn’t conceived as a direct response to the popular song, but rather a
response to the popular, and all too prevalent thought, that a well spent life
can be lived apart from the Life that is Gods gift to us in Christ Jesus, and
that the reality of what lies beyond the grave is subject to our finite and self
One of the truths captured in the meaning of the word “repent” is to
change ones mind and direction. Be it the initial repentance that recognizes
God’s gift of redemption in Christ Jesus and the appropriate response that
receives that gift of salvation. Or be it when I find myself fallen in the way,
by being judgmental, or prideful, or rude, or arrogant, or any other
manifestation of my self-centeredness. Here also, by God’s grace I may stop,
consider and reconsider my circumstance. Again, I may choose to pray that
by His Word and in His Spirit He will lead me in the way of Christ and
deliver me from the folly of my sin. I may choose to walk in obedience to
His command to “deny myself, take up my cross, and follow Him.” In other
words, I may repent.
Sadly, much of the time, I lose the battle before I even realize that I have
been engaged! But in His grace, as I consciously determine to pursue Christ
and His Lordship of my life, He, with increasing measure, makes me
conscious of the daily battle that surrounds me, and the moment by moment
opportunity I have to allow Him to lead me out of temptation and deliver me
from evil, into the Mercy and Truth that proclaim the coming of His
As in all that He commands of us to do, He is ever faithful to give us the
grace to perform. And, as first that life and ability to repent may appear as
small as a mustard seed, it has, over time and practice, the potential to grow
and dominate our being.
From any place of darkness or failure, we may choose to repent, to “arise
and go to Jesus.”
He is Faithful to take us in His arms.
Let us not neglect so great a salvation.