What does it take to begin a relationship with God? Do you need to devote yourself to unselfish religious deeds? Must you become a better person so that God will accept you? Learn how you can know God personally.
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If you were created for community, why can relationships — family, dating, co-workers, neighbors — be so hard? Explore resources to help you live out your life and relationships in a way that honors God.
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What we believe about the gospel and our call to serve every nation.
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I grew up in a middle class home in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. God wasn’t really a part of our household. We would go to church for Christmas and Easter, but other than that, we weren’t really involved. I wanted people’s acceptance – that’s been a theme in my life. I became highly legalistic by trying to perform and trying to gain my righteousness by what I did.
In 8th grade, my Spanish teacher was a Christian. He would talk often about Jesus. In the middle of class, he would share the gospel with us. I got involved in a Saturday morning Bible study that he had been doing with some middle school guys.
I finally understood the gospel. There was a lot of freedom in that. I remember hearing that God fully accepts me for who I am, not on the basis of what I have done, but on the basis of what Christ has done – that was very freeing. Ephesians 2:8-10 was big for someone who was completely submerged in legalism.
From then on, I remember walking in the Lord. But, I still felt like I wanted to impress people, so I had to wrestle through having a double life. Through out the course of high school, the Lord just started the process of kind of weeding out some insecurities and some sin tendencies and sexual sin when I got to college.
In college, I started to get honest and really start to deal with that. I started to cling to Christ. When I went to Ocean City, NJ. on a summer project, that’s when I understood that the gospel requires action. I started to share my faith and take church attendance and membership seriously. From then on the Lord was doing a work.
Now, I want to please God and I want to be concerned about my acceptance from Him and not my acceptance from people. But I realize that my concern about God’s acceptance is not based on my works.
If you are reading this and for some reason you hate God, and you feel alone, know that He is constantly loving you. He will turn the situation around. Therefore, choose God as He chooses you.
It could be said that I grew up in the church, however, my heart was not entirely in it.
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