What Is True Repentance?

 

The repentance of those who think that through a day of fast they will redeem the sin of their repeated intoxication with food and alcohol will be in vain!

True repentance does not mean only when you confess your sins to your spiritual father, but it also consist in the will of not committing them again. It does not only mean the refusal to commit the sin again but also to cry with a broken heart the ones that you did before, and more than that, to make things better through the struggles of repentance, struggles that are proportional with the gravity of our sing or even greater.

The repentance of those who think that through a day of fast they will redeem the sin of their repeated intoxication with food and alcohol will be in vain! Useless, is the repentance of those who think that by restraining for a while from the passions of the flesh they will redeem deadly sins, committed during many years. Unfair is the repentance of those who think that through some tears they will make right all the injustices committed. Doubtful is the exemption of those who think that though a few tears, and without the struggle of true repentance they can wash away their many sins in order to avoid eternal torment!

(Translation from Sfântul Dimitrie al RostovuluiViaţa şi Omiliile, Editura Bunavestire, Galaţi, 2003, p. 131)