Isn’t it just amazing to see the various ways God uses to bring each of us into His family? Growing up, my family went to church every Sunday. Our church attendance was more of a ritual of going to church than an actual attempt of learning how to know and grow in Christ. I never really heard the message of salvation preached by the pastor. I do remember him speaking of how Jesus was the Son of God and that He died for our sins. But as far as I can remember, no instruction of how to receive that gift of salvation was given.
My family and friends were completely faithful in going to church. Everyone I knew was the same; I don’t remember anyone not going each Sunday. But, it was just people going to church.
It never entered my mind that all those people going to church were not going to heaven. They were all good people; no one was really bad or immoral. I lived in a pretty sheltered world. We didn’t hang out with people who were bad. Therefore I thought all church going people were going to heaven.
God began to change my way of thinking. After I moved to California, I began to see kids in high school living differently. I now had a bit of a concept of what sin was watching them. I knew I didn’t do “that stuff” therefore I didn’t even entertain the thought that I was a sinful person. I never dreamed I wasn’t going to heaven. After I was married to Ken, he began pointing out that there must be more to this Christian walk. We sought out and began attending a new church. I learned things through the pastor’s sermons and then later at a Billy Graham Crusade that showed me differently. I walked down to the stage at the Crusade and made a decision to ask Jesus to save me from my sins.
As a new Christian, I began seeing things that I did which were wrong. God even prompted my spirit to go back to the owner of where I worked. My co-workers and I were taking money from the drawer, but I knew God was asking me to return it. I remember sitting in church, thinking the sermon was amazing and how two of my family members sitting next to me should hear that they to needed to walk forward. All of a sudden I realized this sermon was for me! It dawned on me that I was not only to be saved from my sin, but I needed to make Him the Lord of my life. About 10 years ago, I was reflecting over my life. Sometimes, we can tend to think that since we don’t do “drastic sinful things”, that we are pretty good. I know I did. The Lord took me through my life and reminded me that I am sinful, that I continue to struggle with sin, no matter how small the sin is.
It can be hard allowing Him to rule over all of our lives. I struggle constantly with fear.