One of the greatest things God has shown me since surrendering my life to Him, is that He longs for me to know Him. I mean really know Him. He wants to be close to me.... have fellowship with Him. Really have a relationship with Him. I am not talking about going to "church" on Sunday. I am talking about having an intimate and personal relationship with God.
When I was LDS it was all about religion. My families entire life revolved around "church" not Jesus. Starting with 3 hours of meetings on Sundays, and any other "meetings" that may be scheduled during the week. Then there was the kid's meetings, the youth mid week activities, the visiting teaching, home teaching, going to the cannery to get food storage, missionary work, and getting to the temple frequently . I have often heard LDS joke around and say that if there was a 14th Article of Faith it should be something like:
" We believe in all meetings. We hope to attend all meetings. If there is anything to be gained from meetings, we seek after them". LDS are known to have a meeting just to "plan" another one! There was so much to "do" when I was LDS it left precious little time to be able to really get to know God and to know and understand His heart.
When I surrendered my life to Jesus , I found that He wanted all of me..... not just part of me on Sundays......but He wanted all of me, and that has nothing to do with going to church and meetings. He wanted to have fellowship with me, and like the story of Mary and Martha, I needed to chose the "better part" and sit at the feet of the Lord.
Since surrendering my life to Jesus, I have experienced that sweet fellowship with the Lord. Those moments of deep intimacy -- whether that is thru prayer..... or worshipping Him thru music... or just having time with Him as I walk across the green fields of our farm...... He wants me to Himself..... and I long to know Him. So much has changed.
I have been pondering a lot about the radical changes that have occurred in my life since I surrendered to the King. For once in my life, I know God.... maybe just a little...but I really feel like I know Him... and that He truly truly knows me.......... man, that is so sweet.
I wanted to spend some time blogging about this fundamental difference I have experienced since being born again. Jesus is now the center of my life, and my life evolves around HIM , not around church. Do I attend church? Sure, I do! I enjoy the fellowship with other Christians, but it is not my "focus" or my life or the center of my life. The center now is Jesus.
Hopefully these quotes will give you something to think about.......
"Religion can be very different than having a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Religions are man made, and are based on trying to get to God through rules and regulations and works. Man made religions all are based on people's efforts at reaching God and being made right with Him through their own efforts. God's plan for man's salvation and for being right with Him in told throughout the Bible. In the Old Testament and the NT, God's plan is not based on people's efforts and good works, but is based on His amazing love and amazing grace for us. His plan involved His precious Son, Jesus paying the price and cost for our sins on the cross. You need to put all of your trust and faith in Jesus and in what He did for us on the cross and not in any religion or in your own efforts. Simply put all of your trust and faith in Jesus, and accept His gift of salvation and eternal life, and experience the joy of having a right RELATIONSHIP of love with God. " http://www.intimacywithgod.com/
Religion ( self effort, works)
Goal : reach out to God , try to work your way to heaven
Means: diligent service and works, with hopes of reward ( heaven)
Power: good honest effort through self determination
Control: self determination and self control
Results: apathy, failure, chronic guilt eternal separation from God
Salvation through faith in Jesus ( personal relationship)
Goal: Trust fully in Jesus, then live to please HIM!
Means: confess sins, repent, yield self to Jesus
Power: The Holy Spirit does God's work in and through us
Control: allow the Holy Spirit to control and direct our lives
Results: love, joy, peace, freedom, eternal life in Heaven....
"Man's way to reach God is religion. God's way to reach man is JESUS".
Please join me in praying specifically for the Mormons. Please pray that God will draw them to HIM, and that they will long to know the King.
This is a burden I have on my heart ~ please share it with me,