Nothing has surprised me more than knowing how deeply loved I am by God.
I was fourteen. I was searching for love and hope. I was living in a situation that was hard. I felt alone and hopeless. Then I went to church on Easter with my family. Standing in the front was a pastor that talked about Jesus. He spoke about Jesus like he was real. In those moments I felt like he was talking directly to me…to the place that longed for love and hope.
I heard that we are all sinners. Basically, that we all do things wrong. No surprise there! I had been taught well by my mom and dad the difference between right and wrong. But let me tell you I did my fair share of wrong things. Lying, screaming at my parents, disobedience, bad attitude, and the list goes on. Everyone does things wrong. We all sin.
Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”
God is perfect, holy and just. He can not be with sin. So he made a way for us (everybody on earth) to be reconciled to Him. He created us for a relationship with Him. To know Him personally all the days of our lives and forever with Him in Heaven.
Romans 5:12 “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned-”
From Adam sin came into the world and death through sin. This applies to us all…but there is hope.
It’s like God is on one side of the Grand Canyon and we are on the other side. Sin has separated us from God. It doesn’t matter how many good things we do, how good we are, or how hard we try to reach the other side we can’t do it on our own.
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Only through faith. Nothing we have done or will do can save us from our sins. Only faith in Jesus. God’s perfect son. God with skin on came down to live a sinless life, to die on a cross for our sins, and to rise on the third day. God sent His son to die for us. Jesus being all human and all God lived blameless and pure. He was crucified on a cross for my sin and yours because of His great love for us.
John 3:16 ” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
John 14:6 “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
I sat there and heard how He loved me. How He gave His son. That Jesus is the only way. Right there in that pew something inside of me knew I wanted that love in my life. I wanted that relationship with someone who would go through that much just to have a relationship with me. I wanted to know God.
Luke 13:3,5 ” I tell you,no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
As the pastor spoke he mentioned repentance. To ask God for forgiveness for our sins. Then to turn from our sins, place our faith in Jesus and do things God’s way. It’s like we are going one way and then we do a 180 and start going God’s way. Admitting our sin. Asking for forgiveness. Placing our faith and trust in Jesus. Then doing life God’s way. We won’t be sinless, but desire God more than sin.
John 1:12 “Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God”
I could become His child. I couldn’t believe he loved me so much! I sat in my seat realizing I should have been on that cross, but Jesus took my place. He took all the wrath and punishment that was meant for me because He loves me. And on top of that He wants me to know Him. He wants to give me hope, joy and peace. I wanted that more than anything! The pastor asked anyone who wanted Jesus in their life to pray a simple prayer. So I bowed my head in that pew and prayed a prayer like this…
God, I know that I am a sinner. I know that I can’t save myself. I know that because of my sin I am separated from you. I believe Jesus is your son. That He came to die on the cross for my sin and rose again on the third day. I turn from my sin and I place my faith in what Jesus has done for me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
1 John 5:10-13 “Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in their heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
Now I had this testimony in my heart. I had eternal life!
1 Peter 2:2 “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation.”
I went home that day and something changed. I was new. I had Jesus! I was set free! I got a Bible and started reading it. I went to church to learn more about God. I started praying. I started talking to God like He was my dad, my best friend, and God of all things. My life has never been the same since. I found a love like no other. I found hope. I found joy. I found the one thing I needed…Jesus.
Nothing has changed my life and surprised me more that knowing God and His love! Living life with Him is a daily adventure and a life changer!
This post is part of Lisa Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday link up.