|Posted by Lorraine Serra on November 25, 2013 at 10:10 AM|
“Lorraine, sometimes you are so dense! Don’t you see? Don’t you get it? God really loves you! He has already poured out all His love on you and wants to give you everything you need to live joyfully and well, but you just have to receive it! God really does have a perfect plan for your life, and you can receive it, all because of Jesus.”
Maybe I had always had a stubborn, independent heart. Or maybe I had always been distracted. Or maybe I had always just seen church as something you do on Sunday. Maybe I just had never been desperate enough to really seek God. Maybe I just took for granted everything I had ever been taught?
But, suddenly, as Jill shared with me, it was as if a veil had been lifted from my eyes, and everything I had ever heard about Jesus Christ made sense. It was real. It was FOR me. Jesus was FOR me. It was personal. I didn't deserve such love. But, then, that's what grace is all about. It's a free gift of favor and blessing. We don't earn it. It's a gift.
God loved this world He created so much, that He didn’t leave us hopeless in our messes, in our sins and selfishness and failures. He sent His only, precious son, Jesus Christ, to be born into human flesh, to walk among us, to be a great teacher, and a great example of how to love God and love one another. Yes, I had heard all that before.
But, that wasn’t all. His mission was to do what no one else could ever do. This perfect, sinless, innocent, loving Son of God, gave Himself up to be falsley accused and wrongly executed on a Roman cross. He took the penalty for our sin, our weakness and failure in His own body, so that we would never need to suffer the wrath of God, Holy God. He was crushed, died and was buried in our place.
The sin of the world was placed upon Jesus, and He took the punishment that we deserve so we can enjoy complete forgiveness from God. He bought our forgiveness with His own blood. Yes, but what did that have to do with my current crisis?
After three days, He rose from the dead to prove His power, His victory, His authority over everything, even death! This great teacher, healer, lover of men’s souls, did all of this for me! His sacrifice bought me incredible gifts: forgiveness, right standing with God, and the blessings of a loving Father for His child: supply, healing, protection, a new life, assurance that He was with me through anything and everything and a promise to work things out for my best. His risen life was a promise to give me a risen eternal life with Jesus forever in heaven.
I wasn’t sure I totally grasped the incredible depth of this gift of a new life….Jill shared that when I asked Jesus into my life, I would become a new creation…I would get a fresh start, a clean slate, a new life as a child of God, and His ongoing guidance. IF I asked, I WOULD receive.
Finding nowhere else to turn for the comfort and the answers I needed, I prayed with Jill and asked Jesus to come into my life. I asked Christ to forgive me, teach me, guide me. I asked that He would show me how to restore my marriage, and l asked that He would help me to live the life He had planned for me, because I sure was making a mess of it. I asked, if it wasn’t too much to ask, would He heal my voice so I can do something for Him in return.
I didn’t understand it all, but at once I felt like the weight of the world was lifted from my shoulders. I felt a peace in my heart that I could trust Jesus and everything would work out.
I left Jill’s house that day with a new hope in my heart, and a Bible in my hand, because every good Bible thumper has a few extras lying around!! In all my life, I had never read it for my self. Heard a lot of it in church, but never opened it up on my own.
With the peace of God in my heart I headed out to begin my new life, and see how my Savior was going to do exactly that……save me from myself.
Blessed Lord, Why is the human heart so stubborn and so slow to respond to You? Why do we need to go down hard, dark paths sometimes before we turn to You? You are the Way, the Truth and the Life. I praise You that You were always with me, just waiting for me to invite You in. Amen.
Categories: Real Answers For Life