I was raised in a mainline Christian church, but I was in my twenties before someone shared with me that being a Christian was more than a religious practice and church was more than a wholesome place to be on a Sunday morning. I don’t recall ever hearing at my church that I could know Jesus, that He wanted to be my personal Lord and Savior, that He would come and live in my heart if I only asked Him to. I don’t remember anyone telling me as I was growing up that I needed to be born again. I didn’t know I was lost until I was found. Thank God for the young couple who entered my life and quietly began to share the person of Jesus Christ with me. Thank God for saving my mother and then allowing her to pray me into the Kingdom.
I suppose it isn’t surprising, given my love for books, that God chose the printed word to reveal Himself to me. It began when I was given a copy of the Living Bible. Over the following months, as I read the New Testament, I also read The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom, Woman to Woman by Eugenia Price, and Prison to Praise by Merlin R. Carothers. Finally, on Valentine’s Day 1976 at approximately 6:00 a.m., I gave my heart to Jesus.
If I could rewrite my life, I would script myself a walk of complete obedience to my Lord from start to finish. However, the truth is, I let the cares and concerns of this world creep in during the ‘eighties. I allowed the enemy of my soul to strip away my effectiveness for the Kingdom. I faltered and fell on my face plenty. I was a poor witness of the Truth. I compromised when I should have stood strong. I made more mistakes than I care to recall, and those mistakes didn’t just hurt me. (They never do.)
Oh, but God is good and He is faithful, even when we’re faithless!
He never took His hand off of me. He never stopped wooing me and reminding me that I was His. He sent people and circumstances into my life and drew me back to the place where I belonged, into a walk of obedience and faith. And I am here to tell you that He does turn all things to good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. His promises are true!
Jesus has had much to teach me, one of his more strong-willed children, over the past 30+ years that I’ve been a believer, and there is plenty more to be learned before He takes me home. But what an incredible journey of discovery and growth it’s been — and is yet to be — since I submitted to His Lordship. It’s amazing what He can do with hurting, broken lives that are yielded to Him, how He can turn them into something beautiful. He did it for me. He’ll do it for you.
Being a Christian isn’t about religion. It’s about a relationship with the One who made us. And I’m so thankful to be His.
What I Believe
- I believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- I believe that Jesus Christ was begotten by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary and is true God and true man.
- I believe that we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone, that all who receive Christ by repentance and faith are born again of the Spirit and become children of God.
- I believe that the Bible — all the canonical books of the Old and New Testament — is the revealed Word of God as inspired by the Holy Spirit and that it is the supreme and final authority in faith and life
In the beginning the Word already existed. He was with God, and he was God. He was in the beginning with God. He created everything there is. Nothing exists that he didn’t make. Life itself was in him, and this life gives light to everyone. The light shines through the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it… But although the world was made through him, the world didn’t recognize him when he came. Even in his own land and among his own people, he was not accepted. But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn! This is not a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan–this rebirth comes from God. So the Word became human and lived here on earth among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the only Son of the Father. (John 1:1-5, 10-14)
We are made right in God’s sight when we trust in Jesus Christ to take away our sins. And we all can be saved in this same way, no matter who we are or what we have done. (Romans 3:22)
For if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)
He is so rich in kindness that he purchased our freedom through the blood of his Son, and our sins are forgiven. (Ephesians 1:7)
Let me put it another way. The law was our guardian and teacher to lead us until Christ came. So now, through faith in Christ, we are made right with God. (Galatians 3:24)
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right. (2 Timothy 3:16)
For the word of God is full of living power. It is sharper than the sharpest knife, cutting deep into our innermost thoughts and desires. It exposes us for what we really are.(Hebrews 4:12)