It's wonderful to have you as a visitor to this site. If you could visit me in person, you'd see that my desire is to have you feel loved by knowing and believing that God loves you. "He showed how much He loved you by sending His only Son into the world so that you might have eternal life through Him."1
Many people try to gain God's approval through good works. My parents strove for perfection through religious performance and legalism. Religion can't change the heart. It is man's attempt to know and please God apart from the finished work of Jesus.
But with my conviction, they found their religious works were not enough to sustain their lives due to all the pain I had caused. As a result, they turned their wills and lives over to the care of God by trusting in the work of Jesus: His death, burial, and resurrection. At last, they experienced a glorious relationship with God their Father.
Spiritual restoration took place in their hearts through the power of the Holy Spirit. They became right with God through faith in Jesus' righteous redemption. I recall how they began to "sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts."2
Separation From God
I was driven to commit all sorts of sin in my pursuit of happiness only to end up in prison with a life sentence. I was powerless to overcome the effects of my separation from God, until I received the power that God promised, the power that Jesus died and rose again to give.
"And now you also have heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believe in Christ, He identifies you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom He promised long ago. The Spirit is God's guarantee that He will give us everything He promised and that He has purchased us to be His own people. This is just one more reason for us to praise our glorious God."3
If you aren't praising God for having experienced the presence of the Holy Spirit in your heart; maybe your religion has kept you from being identified by God as His own? If you aren't sure, please don't leave this site before confessing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believing in your heart that God raised Him from the dead. "For anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."4
Before Christ came into my heart, I wanted to help children who had lost their way, like myself, but I needed solutions first. I sought help from psychiatry, but I felt I also needed help spiritually. I tried a few religions, what seemed right to me, or what others thought, but thank God, several people felt I should try Jesus. Later, I read in the Bible:
"Don't let anyone lead you astray with empty philosophy and high-sounding nonsense that comes from human thinking and from the basic principles of this world, and not from Christ. For in Christ, the fullness of God lives in a human body, and you are complete through your union with Christ. He is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe."5
I heard God say in the Spirit, "You are complete in Christ." When you ask Jesus into your heart, you come into union with Christ -- the fullness of God. Your spirit comes alive, establishing in yourself an entirely new sense of identity in Jesus. You become a living miracle -- nothing lacking, nothing missing!
My parents loved me unconditionally through it all until the day they went home to be with the Lord. It has been thirty-six years since I made the decision to ask Jesus into my heart.
"What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old is gone. A new life has begun!"6
Immediately, I was given a Bible. If you don't have one, get one, so you can renew your mind with the truth of God's word. Find a local congregation where they teach you verse by verse through the Bible, and who will accept you just the way you are. Let them know that you have asked Jesus into your heart.
"As you come to know Jesus better, His divine power gives you everything you need for living a godly life. He has called you to receive His own glory and goodness! And by that same mighty power, He has given you all of His rich and wonderful promises. He has promised that you will escape the decadence all around you caused by evil desires and that you will share in His divine nature."7
Now, hold on for the ride of your life! The journey out of fear and unbelief will be the best decision you have ever made!
A Prayer For You!
Heavenly Father, in the Name of Jesus, I surrender to you, repenting of my sins and for trusting in my good works for righteousness. I believe that You sent Your Son Jesus to take my sin, guilt, and pain upon Himself, so that I could be made right with You. I believe my sins are completely forgiven because of the precious blood of Jesus. I believe that You raised Jesus from the dead, and I confess Jesus as Lord with my mouth. Forgive me for trying to save myself by my own works. I turn to You with all my heart and trust in the finished work of Calvary. Thank You for this awesome gift of eternal life. Thank You for taking up residence in my heart and for inviting me into Your glorious kingdom. I commit my life to serving before Your throne forever. Amen.
1 1 John 4:9
2 Col. 3:16c
3 Eph. 1:13, 14
4 Rom. 10:8-13
5 Col. 2:8-10
6 2 Cor. 5:17
7 2 Pet. 1:3, 4
Acknowledgement: A special thanks to Sherry for transcribing this months view!