July 24, 2012

From a Burdened Heart

Today, I am writing with a burdened heart.  This week our country has been faced with so much ugliness and hatred.  I have also seen more young people this week who seem to be searching for something/someone that will fulfill all their dreams, but what they don't realize is that people and things will always fail you and never completely fulfill you.  So many people are looking for fulfillment in so many places - a special relationship, entertainment, work, doing good deeds.  Yet, none of these can ever completely fill that empty place.  That's why we end up with people who run into movie theatres and murder others.  That's why there are people who are filled with such hatred when a company stands up for Biblical values.  It makes me sad to see people react so.  It makes my heart grieve.  I cannot even begin to imagine how God, who created each and every one of us, must feel.

But there, I think, is the problem.  So many people have forgotten or have chosen to ignore the fact that they have a Creator and that whether they like it or not, whether they want it or not, they are nothing without that Creator, and they can do nothing without that Creator's knowledge.  God created us, and He gave us His Word so that we can know how to live the happiest and most fulfilled life while here on earth.  Jesus said while He was here on earth, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)  God wants you to be happy and fulfilled.  He is not an ogre looking down ready to bam you every time you do something wrong.  He loves you so much that He gave more for you than anyone else ever has.  He sacrificed His only Son...for YOU!  Has anyone loved you enough to die for you? Yet, your God and Creator did! John 3:16 says, "For GOD so loved the WORLD, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."  And not only does He want to give you life through salvation....He wants to give you ABUNDANT life!  

Yet, we continue to wallow in the muck of this world.  We entertain ourselves with music that has lyrics that should make us blush, yet we laugh at them.  We submit our bodies to the influence of alcohol and drugs instead of keeping ourselves under our own control.  We make up ungodly "lifestyles" in hopes of finding more and more pleasure.  We fill our lives so full of entertainment and busyness and work because we are genuinely afraid to sit still and listen.  When we sit still and listen, we will once again be confronted with the fact that despite all our attempts to make our lives complete, there is still something missing...a void, an emptiness, a longing.  

Friend, if this is you right now, please know that God, your Creator, made that void in your heart so that HE could fill it, but He will not fill it until you allow Him.  Maybe you have tried filling this place in your life with boyfriends/girlfriends, a partner, alcohol, drugs, work, entertainment.  Please know none of these will ever give you the life you want.  Only God can do that.  Also, please know that those of us who are true Christians and followers of Jesus do not hate you.  We are sad for you.  We want you to have the joy and the abundant life that we have.  Please take a few minutes today to sit quietly and search your heart.  Is that void there?  Ask God to fill it for you.  He will.  Below are some verses that, if you obey them completely, will fill that void and longing that is in your heart.

Romans 3:23  "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."
We all have sin in our hearts. We all were born with sin.  
We were born under the power of sin's control.
- Admit that you are a sinner.
Romans 6:23a  "...The wages of sin is death..."
Sin has an ending.  It results in death.  We all face physical death, which is a result of sin.  But a worse death is spiritual death that alienates us from God, and will last for all eternity.  The Bible teaches that there is a place called the Lake of Fire where lost people will be in torment forever.   It is the place where people who are spiritually dead will remain.
- Understand that you deserve death for your sin.
Romans 6:23b  "...But the gift of God is eternal
life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Salvation is a free gift from God to you!  You can't
earn this gift, but you must reach out and receive it.
- Ask God to forgive you and save you.
Romans 5:8,  "God demonstrates His own love for us, in
that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us!"
When Jesus died on the cross He paid sin's penalty. He paid the price for all sin, and when He took all the sins of the world on Himself on the cross, He bought us out of slavery to sin and death! The only condition is that we believe in Him and what He has done for us, and repent of our sins, understanding that  we are now joined with Him, and that He is our life.  He did all this because He loved us and gave Himself for us!
- Give your life to God... His love poured out in Jesus on the cross is your only hope to have forgiveness and change.  His love bought you out of being a slave to sin.  His love is what saves you --  not religion, or church membership.  God loves you!
Romans 10:9,10  "...If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting  in salvation."
Jesus not only died for your sins, He rose again - proving that He has the power over your punishment of death and power over sin.  Believe that Jesus is the only way for your salvation, turn away from your life of sin, and He will save you!

Romans 10:13  "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord  will be saved!"
- Call out to God in the name of Jesus!

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