Life can be hard. We know.

No one can guarantee that our walk on this Earth will be easy. Life can have its ups and downs, and sometimes it seems like it’s all downs. Sometimes it seems like “What’s the point to it all?” Is there a Light in the darkness?

The truth is yes, there is a Light. There is a God that loves you. Did you know that? There’s a God that has said this: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11). Not only did He say this, He said it about you.

No matter what you say, or what you do, God loves you just as you are. More than you can ever know. In fact, He gave us all the best gift anyone could give. 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. (John 3:16)

Why would He have to do this, though?

Because none of us are perfect; we have all sinned. Because of our sin, we are separated from God. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)

There is a penalty for our sin, and it is death. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

There is a hope! This penalty has been paid by Jesus Himself! But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

What is our response? If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)

If you truly accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, pray a prayer similar to this:

Lord I recognize that I am a sinner. I believe you gave your life for me as a payment for my sin. Please come into my life. I accept you as my Lord. I accept your free gift of salvation. 

 

“What should I do now?” you may be thinking. First thing’s first:

Tell someone!

You’ve made a huge decision! This is the beginning of a personal relationship with the loving and powerful God that created you. Be excited and let others know!

 

Start reading the Bible.

If you do not have a Bible, get one. The Bible is God’s love letter to us. It is the Word of God written down for us to turn to at any time. Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (Psalm 119:105) If this is your first time reading the Bible, try reading a version that is easier to understand. The New International Version (NIV), New Living Translation (NLT) and Holman Christian Bible (HCB) are easy versions to start with.

 

Be baptized.

We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. (Romans 6:4) Baptism is a special thing. We were specifically instructed to do so, and for good reason. Above all else it is a symbol of the death of our old sinful selves and a rebirth of our forgiven selves through the grace of Jesus Christ. This is an external act to remind both ourselves and others that we are now new creations. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

 

Plug into a local church.

We understand if you do not join our church even after making a decision to follow Christ. Just as there are many types of people, there are many types of churches. Find a church that you feel comfortable in and start your journey with the others that are there alongside you. The church is not simply a building; it is the body of Christ. It is the people. While it is certainly possible to worship Christ alone, it is important to worship with others. As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17)

 

If you have made a decision or would like to inquire further about what it means to be a Christian, please feel free to call our office at (813) 949-5516. If we are not able to answer we will return your message as soon as we can.

 

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