Saturday, December 26, 2009
The Journey to Emmaus
As born again Christians, we don't believe we can get to heaven by being a good person. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23. It is not by the acts we do, attendance in church, money we tithe, reading the Bible, or just believing that there is a God. These can be religious works whereby man is trying to attempt to reach God. I rarely use the word "hate", but I really do hate the word "religious". My Christianity is based on faith and the truth we find in the Bible, not man-made doctrines or practices. We must first realize our sinful nature and our desperate need of a Savior, a state of almost brokenness in many cases.
That's how it was for me. I had injured my back about six years ago, and cried every night from the intense sciatic pain. I had tried everything including chiropractic, physical therapy, epidurals, cortisone shots, and laser therapy...just to name a few. Then one night after everyone had gone to bed, when looking through a few books that I had sat down with, it seemed that every book had a word or sentence that I had heard earlier that day at a homeschool mom's luncheon. The "coincidences" kept increasing to the point that I felt that the Lord was sitting right next to me and had something to say. The final moment for me was involving the story of Jesus on the road to Emmaus (found in Luke 24). I was to substitute for Sunday School this coming Sunday, teaching this story. This was a first for me, and I had no knowledge of this story, or many other stories in the Bible for that matter. We were attending an Episcopal church at the time. But there, in one of the books I had chosen to flip through that night, was a story about Jesus on the road to Emmaus.
I found myself on my knees surrendering my life to Him, asking for His help, that I could no longer handle it (the pain) on my own. No one had given me a certain "salvation prayer" to say, this was just how it happened for me, like little "bells" that kept going off all day at that luncheon, making mental notes to remember certain words and phrases. One of the women who spoke at the luncheon did say, however, that if you did not know Jesus as your personal savior, to seek someone out who does.
Now, the fruit of that moment over these five and a half years has been the DESIRE to go to church, to read the Bible, to give freely of our money, the desire to fellowship with other believers at a church, etc.
Accept the gift of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross for all of your sins (past, present, and future sins) and receive Him as your Savior. Our part is sincerity and longing for His presence. The rest is a work of the Holy Spirit to transform us. It's not a complicated thing, simple really. The Lord has done the work for us...we only need to sincerely receive Him. If you have not received Jesus as your Lord and Savior, please turn to Him. You will never regret it...He will enter your heart and bring unspeakable joy and peace even in the face of trials. The Bible does not promise believers to have an easy life; on the contrary, it says that believers will be persecuted and scoffed at. But our joy overrides the temporal pleasures of the world and gives us strength to face all things with hope and trust in His providential plan for our lives.
May the Lord bless your day abundantly!