Life & Relationships

What Really Saves Us



A student in Kentucky learns a new lesson about Christ.

Laurie Mitchell and her twin sister Whitney sat in their dorm room talking about something totally unique. It was their freshman year at Transylvania University in Kentucky and what Laurie had just witnessed spurred on the conversation.

Laurie and Whitney grew up in church, played sports, and had always been close. They had just been to a Cru meeting where Laurie had looked around during the time of singing and noticed something strange.

While she was just singing the words on the screen, a lot of the people had their eyes closed and seemed to mean what they were singing. She began wondering,  what is it that these people feel that I don’t? Whatever it is, I want that.

What started as a conversation between the two sisters grew into a larger search as they continued going to Cru meetings and coming back home asking, “Ok, what does this mean?”

After a few months, a friend named Becky (who worked with Cru) asked if she could mentor Laurie and Whitney. The sisters began meeting with Becky, praying, and studying their Bibles. Now they were talking about faith all the time. They were asking, “What’s God doing in your life? What does this verse mean?”

And Becky was a great teacher. She challenged them in their understanding. They already thought they were Christians since they’d been baptized as kids. The biggest challenge to their thinking came when Becky taught them about grace.

Laurie says that growing up, she’d always stayed out of trouble because she thought if she didn’t, God would be angry with her. She lived what she considered a good life: volunteering at youth group, going to church, and doing all kinds of admirable things. However, she realized later that she did all of these "good works" with selfish motives, hoping that all her good work would make her right with God.

But as Laurie met with Becky, she realized that she was saved only by faith in Jesus. She realized it was Jesus' work, not hers. Now her favorite verse is Ephesians 2:8 because it reminds her to be thankful for his grace every day.”

Now finished with graduate school, Laurie and Whitney are ready on a 6-month mission trip to Asia. This is indeed in the category of "good works" but with much better motives than a few years ago. Laurie says she wants to be like Jesus who said, “I don’t do these things for my own benefit but for my Father.”


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