Matthew 25:37-40 “Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
Knowing some things about a person doesn’t necessarily mean that you know them.
I knew about Jesus… It wasn’t until age 31 that I had that ‘Ah-ha’ moment that I honestly did not know Jesus.
That moment came when a man cared enough for my soul to open the Word of God and show me just who I was in light of the scriptures and who Jesus could be to me should I place my faith and trust in Him.
Before that moment, I was empty and feeling hollow inside. None of the world’s remedies could cure it. Oh, they numbed the pain and masked the emptiness; but I knew something was missing.
That meeting; hearing the Bible explained in simple, easy to understand truths opened my eyes to my sinful condition; sin’s punishment in Hell and the way out through Jesus’ blood.
Those two weeks between hearing and acting were a blur. I wrestled with what I had been taught by my parents and believed up until that point, and what the Word of God offered through the blood of Jesus.
The tipping point came when I realized what I had been trusting had no assurance, no promise in the Bible and only a ‘hope so’ salvation based upon what I had done. What I was shown and offered was a ‘know so’ salvation based on what Christ had done for me. He offered it as a free gift for the taking.
My decision came at about 2pm on June 19th, 1990.
It was break time at my workplace, and I hadn’t slept all night because I wrestled in my mind that if I died in my present condition, I deserved to go to Hell.
I went outside and crawled underneath some bushes and knelt there and prayed. I said something simple – “Jesus, I know I am a sinner and with what faith I have I give it to you and trust you to save me.”
Suddenly, the emptiness was gone! Light came where there was darkness, and I felt light and happy.
That day, I met Jesus Christ, the Son of God and now, He was my Savior!
I learned later that that hole I was seeking to fill was a Christ-shaped hole and only He could fill it.
That was 29 years ago. Since that time, I have enjoyed sweet fellowship with my Father, His Son and found the Holy Spirit to be one of the greatest blessings!
I have also been privileged to introduce others to this same Jesus. When presenting them with the same truths from the Word of God, I get to witness a miracle. Knowing I have no power whatsoever to transform a life, I have seen and will continue to see the transaction between God and man when that one gives Him their sin and receives the free gift of salvation!
I have also been fortunate to have been taught about having a daily devotional life. This is not some monk-like experience that requires some mystical methodology. No, this is a simple interaction on a regular basis where I can come to my God and meet with Him for my needs for that day.
He is able to clean me up when I get dirty; comfort me when I am hurting; guide and direct me when I feel lost, and correct me when I have chosen the wrong path. He hears my prayers and invites me into closer fellowship with Himself. We talk and process things that seem hard for me to understand.
I’ll admit, I have gotten angry and yelled at Him – only to hear, “Are you done?” and we began processing just what it was I failed to see or understand. He knows me like no other. He cares for me more than any and all combined. He loves me more profound; unfailing, uncompromising and eternally.
Nothing can separate us.
He is my protector; my confidence; my encourager, and the One I place all my trust. He knows me like no other. He holds my hand when I fear. He pushes me when He wants to show me His power through me. He is there even when I don’t want to be around me!
He gives me grace when I am totally undeserving. He shows mercy and forgiveness when I should receive judgment and punishment. He often uses me often in spite of myself.
I have been privileged to have shared gifts and talents given me to bless others. Through the simple use of those gifts, I have seen revival break out, conviction comes over a soul, and the hand of God come to a heart longing to feel His touch once again. The truths we have sung have allowed God to soften the hard heart to come back into fellowship again.
He has also been present in the prayer closet, my Bible reading and even on the ride to work. He has been there to pick up the pieces of the mess I’ve made, restore that which I thought impossible to mend and bring together the most unlikely of fellows and make them the best of friends.
Tears have been flowing as I type this to you… I could praise Him for so many things, and He is deserving of all of it and so much more!
Dear reader; if you feel lost and alone and away from God, He longs to draw you close to Himself and meet your every need.
Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”
He can make you clean when the stain just won’t seem to go away. Don’t let the enemy let you think God is done with you or doesn’t care.
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”
He is not going to quit on you.
Philippians 1:6 “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:”
Lastly, He is not going anywhere until you meet Him face to face.
Hebrews 13:5 “…for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
2 Corinthians 5:8 “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”
Take Jesus with you into everything you do today. Feel His presence and introduce Him to any and all who will listen. Live for that day you and I will see Him face to face.
I look forward with anticipation to that meeting. I hope that is your desire as well.