12 Years in Christ!

20 Apr


12 years ago, my life was much different. It would’ve been about this time that I was on my way to Sunday evening worship. It was an ordinary Sunday, just like every other Sunday night of my life prior to April 20, 1997. At nine years old, life was pretty much routine. I had no way of knowing that this was about to become the best day of my entire life!

I don’t remember the specifics of the message, but I remember the burden of conviction on my heart. I know my pastor, who was also my Great-Grandfather,  preached on Hell and the ONLY way to escape it, Jesus Christ. I knew I had yet to accept the ONLY way and knew that if I were to die that night Hell would have been my eternal home. I can still hear the congregation singing “Just as I am” and hear my Papal pleading for the lost to receive Christ. I remember knowing what needed to be done yet struggling to release my grasp on the pew in front of me.

Then, someone stepped out. I wasn’t aware that my little sister, who was 6 at the time, had been struggling with the same conviction. It was then that God spoke to my heart again. I knew that Dad and Mom had personal relationships with Jesus and that Meg was about to join them. That would mean that I would be the only one in our family outside of God’s grace. That was exactly what I needed to give me the final push! Finally, I let go of the resistance I had been hiding behind for probably about a year. I stepped out and followed Meg down the aisle. I am so thankful that God knows exactly what it will take to win the heart of the lost sinner. I am so thankful that He is patient and saw fit to give me opportunity after opportunity of hearing the Gospel until I finally accepted His wondrous offer of salvation!

So kneeling at an old tear-stained altar, I sought forgiveness and found what (or rather Who!) I was seeking! So heavy on my heart since the moment I woke up this morning has been the thought of “How different life would’ve been… Had it not been for Him!”

Though the first 9 years of my salvation were different from the past 3.5 in that it has just been since 2005 that I’ve sought a daily relationship with Him, I can only imagine how very different the past 12 years would’ve been if I hadn’t accepted Christ on that Sunday night in 1997. Perhaps I would’ve strayed into deep sin with the wrong high school friends, perhaps my teenage years would’ve been full of the pain and regret that comes with wrong choices and bad decisions. Though my teenage years were not very productive for the cause of Christ, I am so thankful for salvation and His tender keeping! I am so grateful that He spared me from the terrible effects of sin. On the other hand, maybe I would’ve managed to stay out of “trouble” and have appeared to be a Christian, while merely “playing church” on the inside! Either way, I would’ve been lost and dead in my trespasses and sins. I would’ve missed out on 12 wonderful years with my Jesus! Regardless of how different the last 12 years would’ve been, I know for sure that they would’ve been miserable!

This verse was in the first passage of Scripture I read this morning…

“For thou, Lord, hast made me GLAD through thy work: I will triumph in the works of thy hands.” Psalm 92:4

Truly, my God has made me GLAD through His Work. As I look back over the last 12 years, I can see His fingerprints all over each situation and circumstance! I can see countless times that His Amazing Grace had to fall upon me afresh for I certainly haven’t lived each day as I should. I can see His Patience as He has had to teach me the same lesson a million times over. I can see how He has turned each trial into triumph, every painful experience into an experience in which I felt His peace. Looking back, I can see my God. I am so GLAD that He paid the wages that I owed yet could never pay. I am so thankful that He died the death I deserve to give me what I am most undeserving of! If I lived for one hundred years, I would never have been able to accomplish anything on my own merits. I am so thankful for His accomplished work at Calvary. The accomplished work that has given me 12 incredible years in Christ and has many more full of  His awesome Presence awaiting me!

He has “made me GLAD” through His work of salvation in my life! I love my Lord! 🙂

  “He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.”Psalms 40:2

I had been in a horrible pit, drowning in the miry clay of sin, but He has set my feet upon a rock and established my goings! 🙂 Thank you, Jesus! 🙂


2 Responses to “12 Years in Christ!”

  1. Joe Newsome April 20, 2009 at 10:42 pm #

    I am so thankful for the day Jesus saved my soul. Many times I wish I would have gotten saved when I was younger, but I am thankful for when I did. Thank you for the reminder.
    Love you
    Uncle Joe

  2. STEVE ROWE April 22, 2009 at 2:21 am #

    justification a change of standing before God regeneration a change of nature from God repentance a change of mind about God conversion a change of life for God adoption a change of family in God sanctification a change of service unto God glorification a change of place with God Therefore if any man be in christ he is a new creature 2 corinthians 5;17 Lord bless your day You got a friend in pennsylvania Steve Rowe

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