Good morning everyone and God bless you all! The storm was not as bad as they said yesterday. The snow is already melting and we are right back to bright sunny blue skies today. I was contemplating a verse this morning that kept running through my mind. I kept seeing the first part of the verse that goes like this: “Brothers, think of what you were when you were called.”
That sentence is from a verse in the Book of 1 Corinthians:
“Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth.”
1 Corinthians 1:26
I think it is important to remember where we came from and the same is true for Christians. Not to beat ourselves up about the past, but to praise God for the abundant grace that has been poured out on us. Folks, the man you know here on this blog that writes about Jesus all day every day is not the same man I was before Jesus called me.
If you had known me when I was 18 in 1996, you would have been praying hard for me. I hated Christians. I would actually get angry and cuss at them when they tried sharing the Gospel with me. I said the “F” word all the time in just normal every day conversation. I was a fornicator and a drunkard and I loved to party. I had no intention of ever accepting Jesus and I sure didn’t think I would spend the majority of my life preaching about Him, but I praise God that He had other plans for my life.
“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.”
I was most definitely dead in my transgressions and sins, and the ruler of the kingdom of the air, that is the evil one, had a grip on me. I followed his #1 rule, which is to do whatever feels good and do whatever you want. That way of living leads to death–plain and simple.
I praise God every day for saving me! I remember the darkness of following the ways of this world and the pain, loneliness, and hurt that come with it. I remember the evil we lived with and how terrifying death was to me. I remember the drunken nights every weekend and the confusion and sorrow that caused. I remember the one night stands that left my heart broken and raw. I remember what it was like to follow the evil one’s way in this world and all he ever tried to do was kill me! Praise God for the victory that He gives us through Jesus Christ! Praise God!!!
“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions–it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
God has been so kind to me and I rest every day in His incomparable grace! It is incredible that God will call us when we are so messed up we hardly know right from wrong anymore, and then He raises us up with Jesus and anoints us with a spiritual blessing of being seated with Him in the heavenly realms! That is, those who receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior by faith are protected by the power of His blood shed for us on the cross!
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no one can boast.”
I could have died in my sins so many times, but the Lord saved me and I will never forget that! He had mercy on me, He poured out His grace and kindness on me, and He showered me with forgiveness and love. He wants to do the same for you and He is calling you! Do you hear Him?
“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
“for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
No matter where you are in life right now, do not ignore His call! God can save anyone no matter how deep in the darkness they might be. He is calling you out of that darkness this very moment! Reach out and take His hand! He will save you and set you free just like He did for me!
“It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God–that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.”
1 Corinthians 1:30
I was definitely not wise, righteous, holy, or redeemed before I accepted Jesus by faith! I only preach about Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit inside of me that was given to me when I received Him (Ephesians 1:13-14). Let us always remember that we never were, never are, and never will be righteous in ourselves. Those who follow Jesus are only made righteous, holy, and redeemed through their faith in Him. We are justified through His sacrifice on the cross alone! Remember what you were when you were called and let us never forget the grace, mercy, and kindness that has been poured out on us!
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.”
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
Jesus promising eternal life in John 3:16
Thank You for rescuing me Lord! Continue to make me the man you want me to be and may Your will be done! Jesus is Lord! Come to Him today and He will make you brand new by His power and love!
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
2 Corinthians 5:17-21
Not counting men’s sins against them! You can only find that through Jesus! From a fornicating drunk party animal to an ambassador of Christ. Only God can create a new creation like that! Jesus loves you and He wants to make you brand new! Accept His love and forgiveness today and be reconciled to God!
Grace and peace to you all!