If all of my effort to write means anything, my prayer is that I help people learn more about Jesus, growing in faith and maybe seeing ways to improve their relationship with God they had not thought about before.
Jesus loves us more than anyone. I know this truth because I believe He lived as a human, the only human who never sinned, and took on the punishment for my sin when He allowed Himself to be placed on a cross. I know that I will live eternally with Him because I believe He rose from death to be a living God forever.
We cannot rely on just ourselves to define what is good and bad and expect to find peace in this life. The Bible tells us what it means to know God and gives us the roadmap to living a life that pleases God. Jesus describes living according to the Law of God as staying on the narrow path and walking in the light. When we believe in and love Him, trying every day to live right is actually a lighter burden because Jesus is with us, helping us do what is right through the Holy Spirit, His gift to those who believe.
Knowing Jesus is a life-long quest. The more we learn about Him, the more we can lean on Him in times of trouble and to help us make wise decisions each day. Knowing Jesus helped me survive having to watch my mother die from ALS, one of the worst diseases on the planet. Because of Jesus, I strive to be productive even though I struggle with several illnesses that make working and sometimes even moving difficult.
Two of the saddest stories in the Bible to me involve people who turned away from Jesus. When Jesus drove the demons out of the Gentile and into the herd of pigs at Gerasene, the Gentile followed Jesus’ orders and went home to tell about the great things that Jesus was doing. Unfortunately, the people of Gerasene let fear win out over faith. They asked Jesus to leave, which meant He didn’t do any more miracles there or touch any more lives.
The second time Jesus gets rejected is in his own hometown. Even though He went into the synagogue and taught them things that astonished them, the people couldn’t get over the fact that Jesus had grown up among them. “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son?” they asked each other. Because of their unbelief, Jesus left Nazareth without performing the amazing miracles or continuing to preach as He had done in so many other areas of Israel.
In contrast to the people who turned away from Jesus, we have the story of the woman whose belief in Jesus was so great, she experienced healing just by touching Jesus’ cloak. Others followed suit, allowing their faith to open the way up for blessings.
Being a Christian means putting Jesus first. Ironically, because Jesus loves us and wants what is best for us, putting Him first inevitably helps us bring about the best life we could hope for. Praying helps us connect to Jesus, who is the reason we can come before Almighty God and ask for the best of things, as well as seeking forgiveness of sins and guidance for our walk in the light. The more we talk with God, the closer we will draw to Him.
I pray for this country because our media at least has taken an increasingly active role to deny Jesus, just like the people of Gerasene and Nazareth. No love can surpass the love of Jesus, He who stepped down from His divinity to face the wrath of that divinity toward a human race that lived in brokenness. Jesus’ love for us is pure and infinite. Any other kind of love has limits and imperfections. Any one who thinks he or she can live without Jesus’ love lies to himself or herself. And even though Jesus hurts for those who refuse to believe in Him, those who suffer most for unbelief are the non-believers themselves.
Start or re-start your walk with Jesus. Admit that you are a sinner in need of forgiveness. Ask Jesus to forgive you and to become your Savior. Make a commitment to change your behavior as you grow with Jesus. Open your heart to the gift of the Holy Spirit by practicing good Christian steps of daily prayer and Bible study. Know the God of the Bible and not just the God of your heart.
Let’s bring Jesus into this troubled world by shining His light. Now more than ever, we need to remember that He has the infinite view, always ready to guide us in love.