I realize it's been an awful long time since I last posted, but I'm just so bursting with news. I figured I must share with someone, anyone-- is there anyone left still even checking my blog?
A few months ago, I posted that I was taking a hiatus because of a particular area that God was stretching and challenging me in- and I needed the time to spend with Him. Well, God has taken me through that to the other side, and has already given me my next assignment- so I've got some time again. And, I just couldn't hold back on the Lord by not sharing all He is doing in my life! My particular challenge back in November was to "work out my own salvation with fear and trembling" (Phil. 2:12). Specifically, I got saved back in 1995, but for a long time, had not really been living like it. My life was so full of sin that I didn't even feel the presence of God anymore. And then the doubts crept in- if I was truly saved, why was I afraid to talk about it, how could I act the way I did and still consider myself a child of God? Why was life so hard all the time?
I had periods of this before in my life, but this one was characterized by the absolute, burning desire to KNOW FOR SURE if I was saved, once and for all, and then to get on with it! The Lord impressed on me not to speak to anyone (even my husband) about it. For you see, it mattered not what everyone else though-- only that I be right with the Lord Jesus Christ. So for the first time in my whole life, I did not speak to anyone about a problem.
Praise God for His awesome timing in all things, for the very next week at church our pastor preached from I John 3: 11-15. "And this is the record, that God hath given us eternal life, and this life is in His son. He that hath the son, hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God, hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life...." The Lord used that message as a spring board of faith for me to step out and truly ask God if I was saved- and if so, to take the doubts away from me.
Through the following months, I saw, on a daily basis, evidence of the fruits of salvation in my life. A transformed heart and spirit of love and forgiveness, increased faith, the resurgence of love for God's word that makes me hunger for it- it was as if God had finally opened my eyes to all He has done and is doing in my life to transform me into His likeness. I think often times because the changes can be so gradual, that we miss the overall view of ourselves in comparison. I do not mean by all of this that God has made me a perfect, sin free person- only that I see Him more and more in my imperfections. 2 Cor 12:9 "...My grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness."
I saw also the areas of sin in my life that were allowing the devil to come in and attack me with doubt- specifically at that time it was not reading God's word on a daily basis. I cannot explain how it works- but I do know that the word is likened to "food", and that without a regular intake of it, my life had become malnourished. That lead to weakness, fleshly thinking and acting, and sin. Romans 12:2 says: "And be ye not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God." So, you see, when I was trying to change my sinful behavior outside of this transforming power, I was failing and weak. Easy pickings for the devil who is described thusly: "...because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." I Peter 5: 8.
I'm sure this seems mighty elementary to some, but please believe me when I say that I never really had accepted these truths in my heart, and that is a major reason why I was in doubt all the time. I encourage you that if you feel questions about your salvation status, to ask God in faith to show you- and He will. It may or may not be the same path as mine- but He will answer you.
And, if you've never considered the claims of Christ and the Bible- please click http/www.vb.org search for "Romans Road", read it with an open heart, and consider it. I guarantee you that it will transform your life.
Since then, God has gently lead me in other areas of growth. Once I was able to be free of the cloud of self-condemnation, and allow God to speak to me- then I could truly become what He has for me. Praise God for His faithfulness!
Coming soon- a life and death struggle for a loved one, and the awesome transforming power of God.