|"The Many Colors of Fall"|
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
I was driving home yesterday through the state of West Virginia. I've been through West Virginia many times as my mother's side of the family is from there so I've got a lot of great childhood memories. However, I'd never driven from one side of the state to the other especially not in the Fall season. My drive took me down winding and curvy roads with a few 4-lane roads to give me a breather between the extremely sharp curves which occasionally made me think I would see the back-end of my car still coming around the curve as the front-end was going into it.
My wife and I were returning from a fan retreat with the Booth Brothers in Shipshewana, IN. It was a week of awesome music, inspiration, and lots of humor! The time spent there reminded me of how much God takes care of me in this life. He blessed my wife and me with the time at the retreat and then as we were driving home, an incredible trip.
When my wife took the wheel of the car to give me a break, I couldn't help but notice how beautiful God created the West Virginia mountains with its incredibly beautiful fall foliage. In some parts of the mountains were areas where the trees hadn't changed colors yet so green leaves were interspersed throughout. In some parts, it looked like God had taken a paintbrush mixed with various shades of red, yellow, and orange and splashed it across the mountains. The landscape was so incredibly beautiful.
As we drove through the mountains, at first, I began wondering if it was wise to drive this route instead of the interstate. I soon realized that the scenery along the way was a Gift from God who was directing us through His Creation instead of rushing through and missing the beauty of the Fall season and weather. To think, I know the Creator who singlehandedly and perfectly created the beautiful scenery we drove through was unfathomable.
How do I know the Creator? When I became a Christian in my college years, I gave my life to Christ. I was raised in the church and thought I was saved at a very young age of 6. However, a college professor instigated a few thoughts in my mind about whether or not I was a Christian so I confirmed it with Jesus and made sure that I was. Jesus has been a part of my life and guiding my steps since that young age.
Many times the idea of becoming a Christian is blurred by someone or something making it sound out to be more difficult or complicated than it is. Or, we believe we are not worthy because we have committed so many wrongs in our lives. First, it isn't complicated and, no, we do not deserve it but God loves us and says that we are if we accept Him as our Lord and Savior. It is as easy as prayfully reading through the following steps:
Admit that you are a sinner, just like everyone else born into this world, until we confess to Jesus Christ and ask His forgiveness:
"(23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (24) and are justified
by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,"
- Romans 3:23-24, ESV
"(23) For the wages of sin is death,
but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."
- Romans 6:23, ESV
Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ:
"(16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son,
that whoever believes in him
should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16, ESV
Confess your sins in a prayer to the Lord Jesus Christ:
"(9) because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord
and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. "
- Romans 10:9, ESV
"(13) For 'everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'”
- Romans 10:13, ESV
"Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and do not deserve eternal life.
I believe You died and rose from the grave to make me a new creation
and to prepare me to dwell in your presence forever.
Jesus, come into my life and take control,
forgive my sins and save me. I place my trust in You alone
for my salvation and I accept your free gift of eternal life."
Now, you're a Christian - Welcome to the family. So, what's next-
- Find a 100% Bible-believing, teaching, preaching church. Here are a few resources:
- Find believers (Christians) to fellowship with.
- Get baptized.
- Buy a Bible
- Read the Book of John.
- Get in a Bible Study.
- Daily: Pray and read the Bible
- Find a Mentor
- Learn how to Pray
- If you find yourself asking "Why am I not perfect" or "Why am I still doing wrong things?" Be sure to talk with your Pastor, a Christian friend or a mentor.