Sunday after Sunday I sat in the pews of a small church, each time wearing my nicest attire. Sitting still, I'd listen, even at a young age, and learn about the love of our omnipotent God. I believed in God and what Jesus did.
But I never knew him.
I was the girl in school, even-tempered and sweet, who'd show kindness to friends. My motivation was my conscience. It was the good thing to do, showing love to the lovable. I thought I knew what love was.
Now I know the fullness of God's unconditional love.
In Mark 1:15b Jesus said, “'Repent and believe the good news!'” Why, then, do many think salvation is based on believing alone and not repenting? James 2:19 proves that belief in God is not enough. There it says, “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that-and shudder.”
Believing in God is not enough. You must repent and believe, just as Mark 1:15 states.
I was twelve years old when Jesus saved me. By that time in my life, my mind was already filled with stories of him. Like I said, I knew about him, but I never knew him. It wasn't until I surrendered my life to him that everything began to change.
I became a Christian when I surrendered my life in repentance.
To this day, I repent. It's a constant surrendering and continual pursuit of God and his will. I am a Christian, and you will see it is evident by the fruit in my life.
What about you? I hope you are thriving in a relationship with our loving Father. If that is the case, my prayer is for God to deepen your relationship with him as you study more of his word this week.
However, if you are like some, believing in God, but not knowing him personally, my prayer is for your salvation. As you study along this week, I also pray God will open your eyes to discern what true Christianity is.
Today, we begin the second week of our study of 1 John, where we will learn more characteristics of a true Christian. I also encourage you to join along this week, even if you opted out of last week's study. Download this week's reading guide by clicking here. Let's begin by a taking a closer look at Monday's verse.
“The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.” 1 John 2:17, NIV
As you read the verse, consider the following:
Name a characteristic of a Christian.
What is the will of God?
Think of one practical way you can pursue the will of God today.
Photo: Karl Fredrickson