At age 38, after a two-year journey trying to disprove Christianity’s validity, God’s creation overwhelmed me (Michel A. Bell) and I didn’t have faith to believe everything in the universe came from nothing. Simultaneously, God opened my eyes and my ears. I saw His hand in many daily activities and later I surrendered my life to Jesus. I asked Him to help me live as His follower wherever I went. Over twenty years later, I look back and marvel at His devotion, consistency, and His love.
Jesus is Lord Ask Him to Control Your Life
Jesus is Lord even if we don't acknowledge this. Jesus wants you to have eternal life. Where are you today? Examine your credit card charges, check stubs and other expenses for the past month. What do they tell you? Managing God’s money means lifestyle management. It’s about choices. It is merely one area of life we cannot isolate from others.
How we spend money,
time and other resources help define who we are. We spend money based on our attitudes or beliefs. That's why it’s essential we know what we believe and where we get the right attitude to life, money, wealth and possessions.
You might ask: really, is there a right attitude? Who decides the right attitude? Where should we go to develop this right attitude? How do we know truth from lies? These are questions Jesus' followers know the Bible answers. Jesus the Messiah is truth. His Word, the Bible, contains unchanging truths. His truth shows us the right attitude. So, to manage God’s money, you must know Him and His Word. You need to become Jesus’ Chief Financial Officer, spending His funds according to His principles in the Bible.
Jesus is love. He is a perfect Father who calls each of us into a personal relationship with Him, to a forever that you will remember -- everlasting life with Him in heaven. A personal relationship with Jesus is the basis for a life with Jesus as your guide. A personal relationship with Jesus is the foundation of a fulfilled life.
Jesus told the eminent Jewish teacher Nicodemus that Nicodemus needed a spiritual rebirth to gain eternal life [John 3:1-17]. A spiritual rebirth is the only way to get a personal relationship with Jesus. Likewise, He told his disciples ...unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven [Matthew 18:3]. Jesus is calling you to enter a personal relationship with Him. This is more than "asking Jesus into your life," an idea not found in the Bible. We must believe and we will be saved (John 3:16, Acts 16:31, Romans 10:9)
Listen to Jesus' call and accept His invitation for this forever to remember. Ask Him to give you the eyes, ears, faith, sincerity, and humility a child displays to her parents; ask Him to help your unbelief. And remember, responding to His invitation means accepting you are a sinner who needs a Savior. It means too repenting of your sins. Repentance is not popular today, but repentance is what the Bible teaches.
Personal Relationship With Jesus The Shepherd Is The Answer
A personal relationship with Jesus will provide access to your personal loving heavenly Father. Surrendering your life to Messiah Jesus will be your most important lifetime decision. Easy, yet profound, it starts your journey to heaven. Do you accept the following?
Jesus the Messiah lived on earth, died, then rose from the dead.
He is the only true and living God.
The Bible is the word of God (inspired) and is without error (infallible).
You are a sinner, and you need to seek forgiveness.
From your heart, go for it!
Apostle Paul tells us in Romans 10:9: 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. From your heart, will you do the following? That's a promise.
Ask Jesus to forgive your sins.
Decide to turn away from your sins (repent).
Ask Jesus to take control of your life (surrender your life to Jesus. Let Him be your Lord and Savior).
Ask Jesus to show you how to live as His follower wherever you go (so you apply His values consistently).
Be Born Again And Let Jesus Guide You
When you surrender your life to Jesus, your worldview will change as the Holy Spirit comes to live in you to be your teacher and guide (John 14:26). Surrendering your life is more than saying a few words or repeating specific prayers. It is believing with your heart, confessing with your mouth He is Lord, and accepting that you need Him. When you surrender your life to Him, You might not become materially rich and famous, but you will gain direct access to your perfect heavenly Father. He made you in His image. He loves you.
Ask Jesus to help you live the new life with Him as Lord. Speak to Him regularly. Listen to Him by studying the Bible. Attend a Bible believing congregation ... nut beware of congregations that preach "feel good" messages only. Meet with other followers of Jesus to encourage and nurture them and to receive the same. Again, I say, beware; not everyone who claims to be a follower of Jesus has surrendered to Lordship.
Easy "believism" pervades the church. Study the parable of the sower and the seed in Luke 8. Notice, only one soil bore fruit. It's not the words you say now that will decide if you surrendered your life to Jesus, it's how your heart (soil) reacts to the Word (the seed)...I encourage you to meditate on Luke 8. Jesus puts it this way in Matthew 7:21 (NIV). Not everyone who says to me, ’Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Good works do not save us; however, good works is the inevitable result of our salvation; it's the fruit.
Invitation From Jesus The Shepherd
1.0 Read John 10:27-30 and ask Jesus to guide you as you answer these questions:
1.0.1 What does Jesus say about Him and His Father?
1.0.2 Who are the sheep and what do they do?
1.0.3 Why can’t the sheep be lost?
1.1 Read John 3:1-17 and answer these questions:
1.1.1 Who was Nicodemus? Why did he go to see Jesus?
1.1.2 What does Jesus tell us about being born again?
1.2 What does Jesus say about eternal life in John 5:24?
1.3 What does John the Baptist say about eternal life in John 3:36?
1.4 What does Apostle John say about eternal life in 1 John 4:9?
1.5 How might eternal life, explained by Jesus, affect your view of daily events?
1.6 Meditate on Psalm 139:23-24. Ask Jesus to show you hindrances to a relationship with Him, and to help you remove them.
Your journey to heaven has begun; ask the Lord to lead you where you can be discipled and grow, and grow, and grow. I close with this blessing in Numbers 6:24-26 that God told Moses to tell Aaron to bless the children of Israel: The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.