Be sure and check the post below this one for the Bible Challenge Answers. I thought it would be better to make a mini-post out of that because this post turned out to be so in-depth.
Sorry I missed yesterday, but I was trying to get some business taken care of and unfortunately, I am one of those people who have a one track mind and cannot have my mind on anything other than what I am doing at the time. Please forgive me. Now, back to my routine.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will sup (eat) with him and he with Me. (Revelation 3:20)
When a person opens the door of their heart to Christ, they are inviting Him to take over their lives and teach them the ways of God, the ways which are acceptable to God.
It may be a little uncomfortable at first. Change always is, but if you will just set your mind, your ideas and your prejudged attitudes free, then you will see wonderful things happening in your life. That is why I have heard many times "living for God is SO HARD! The reason it's hard is because the flesh and the spirit are fighting. You must let the spirit win this fight. As I said if you will let the spirit win, you won't be able to count all the blessings God will bestow upon you. He loves His people.
I know what you're thinking. You are thinking "we are ALL His children. Not so. We are all His creation. but His Children are those who believe in Him, love Him and Walk with Him. Those who have opened the door of their heart and asked Him to come in, and continue this relationship. Don't let it be an "event". It must be a journey. a lifestyle. We cannot expect the same blessings and love from Him if we just walk around saying "I believe in Jesus" but don't back up our words by trusting Him with our lives, and living FOR HIM. As the ol' saying goes, "Talk is Cheap".
Changing your lifestyle may be uncomfortable at first. I refuse to say hard because if you love God, then you will be willing to do it with no complaints. Not only that, but if you receive the Holy Ghost, He will be there to guide you into All Truths and teach you. The Key here is listening and yielding to His nudging. Think of it as a marriage. you make concessions for your spouse who sometimes lets you down, or worse, yet you stick with marriage and work through the tough times. So must it be with God. The difference is, God will NEVER let you down, He will never steer you wrong, because He can't. He knows where you've been, where you are , and where you are going in life, so if you will live for God and follow His leading (the Holy Ghost), you will not go wrong. You must open the door to your heart and let Him in. He won't barge in like an unwelcome relative. He is a "gentleman". He waits for you to invite Him in, He nudges you in the right direction with His still small voice.
I can't help but feel for the misguided souls that think that the mere words I believe, or I take Jesus as my Savior will automatically give them complete Salvation. God wants us to have a relationship with Him. Just like when He walked in the cool of the day with Adam and Eve, so He wants to do with us. He cannot do this if we don't live for Him, or talk to Him, or pray. These are all part of the Relationship which He so desperately wants to have with us.
Please, please, take this seriously and develop a relationship with God. First, Invite Him in. It's not hard, it doesn't even have to be formal. You can do it sitting at your computer desk, in your kitchen washing dishes, it doesn't matter. All that needs to be said is, " Jesus, I need you , please come into my heart. Then start living for Him. Talk to Him just like you would a friend. If you will do that, you would be surprised how quickly you start wanting to do more for Him. The more you talk to Him, the more you want to know about Him, so you will start reading your Bible at least looking up specific verses for the circumstances you are in. It just blossoms.
It feels so good to not have questions about "am I sure I'm saved" , even if I believe in Jesus, but I don't go to church or read my Bible as long as I "say"I believe will I go to heaven? "I'm basically a good person", I don't gossip, or say anything bad, I don't lie or steal, and I do help people sometimes if I'm not too busy, I think that will get me into heaven. These are questions and statements I had when I was a "hit and miss" Christian. For those who don't know what that is, it's my title for me when I was going to church once in a blue moon, and I had all these honest, but misguided ideas.
I've have been a TRUE Christian, for only about 12 years. I repented (which before I thought just meant to say, "I'm sorry) but found out that true repentance is saying I'm sorry, but also completely turning away from doing whatever it was, and sincerely praying through to God forgiveness. Then I got baptised by being complete dunked (I always forget if that is called immerse of submerged) LOL! Anyway, because that means I am Completely cleaned of my sins. (you wouldn't expect to get clean by being sprinkled with water, so how can you be cleansed of your sins by a sprinkle?) Just a thought. I do this in Jesus' Name. According to Acts 4:12 ; Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. When you do this you Shall be given the gift of the Holy Ghost. This is a lot to take in at one time, so just take baby steps. Ask Him to come into your heart, start reading His Word, even if it's just a couple of verses per day, get them into your heart. Living for God is a joyous feeling. It's only hard if "you make it hard".
When you live for the Lord it makes you want the spiritual side of things more and it feels so good. Well, here I am going on and on, I hope this post has made a difference in some one's life. I pray that I have been used as an "instrument' for God to touch some one's heart and make them curious or "more curious" than normal. God Bless you all in Jesus' Name.
Have a great evening!