Fall is in full color. Another year is winding down. What a year it was. January was uneventful until the end when I had a stroke. I spent some days in the ICU. The hospital wanted to keep me 2 more weeks, but I convinced them I needed to get home. I was able to do just that with the help of my family. After several weeks of therapy I am semi-normal. Some things will never be the same, but I am thankful to be here.
When you are faced with death you think of all the things you want to say to all the people you love.
This is such a letter.
My life is made up of so much more than what you see on the outside. Yes, I am a wife, mother, grandmother, and teacher that enjoys hiking, making music, making art, going to auctions, cooking and a good cup of tea.
However, my life is held together by one thing. My relationship with God. Any good you see in me is because of Him. Any bad you see in me is because of my failure…yet He still loves me and calls me His own.
I have known Him for about 58 years. I first learned of him by listening to my parents as they told Bible stories using flannel graph figures and when my father read the Bible to us at the breakfast table and often after supper.
Then there was the music. Hymns and songs that still come back to me with word perfect clarity.
I am so glad that our Father in Heav’n Tells of His love in the book He has giv’n
Wonderful things in the Bible I see, This is the dearest that Jesus loves me.
I am so glad that Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me,
I am so glad that Jesus loves me, Jesus loves even me.
If I forget Him and wander away, Still He doth love me wherever I stray;
Back to His dear loving arms would I flee, when I remember that Jesus loves me.
There are more verses and many more songs. Many with deep theology, some with poor theology. But the point of them all is how much God loves us.
Why does He love us? The short answer is … because He made us. We might not like our nose or our hair or any number of things we think of as defects, but He made us just so, to serve a purpose, to worship Him and bring glory to Him, but instead we have turned our back on Him. We try to make our own way. These efforts have gone horribly wrong. The point is we need God. We are nothing without Him. Our best efforts belong on the garbage heap.
So why does He love us? Such wretched creatures surely aren’t worth His time. But you see God is a master artist and we are His masterpieces. We have gotten twisted and ruined, but if we come to Him; He can restore us to how we were meant to be.
Our sin should have meant the death of us, but instead Jesus came to take our place.
To die for us.
To rise for us.
To ascend to heaven to intercede for us.
This is no small thing. This should make us daily fall on our knees in worship and awe. We have been bought with a price. We can choose to continue in our ruined state or we can accept His gift of salvation and watch His transforming power.
There is nothing I can do to earn heaven. It is a simple act of repentance and accepting the free gift.
Don’t delay. None of us knows how long we will be here. Decide before the opportunity passes you by.
I love you, friend, but there is someone who loves you more. Get right with Him today.
“that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”…for Whoever will call upon the name of the LORD will be saved.” Romans 10:9-11, 13