The Gift That Changed My Life

I have decided to follow Jesus.

That is the gift that changed my life when I was a child.  A gift in the form of a baby born in the town of Bethlehem. A gift that was freely given, not by man, but by God.  A gift that I decided to accept and receive when I was 12 years old.

I even marked that day in my Bible:  October 23, 1988.  I didn’t want to ever forget the day I gave my life to Jesus.  I didn’t want to forget the day that I chose to accept this gift from God.

Making a decision to follow Christ was easy as a child.  I grew up with parents and grandparents who raised me in a Christian home.  I knew God loved me and I knew that Jesus died for my sins so that everyone who believed in Him would live forever with Him in heaven. I went to church, read my Bible, prayed, went to church camp, was a devout member of my youth group, and loved God with everything I had.

Little did I know that on that day in October of 1988, God would be calling me to live a life of complete surrender, a life of radical obedience, a life devoted to Him, a life where my eyes are focused on Him, a life where I have to let go of control, a life of ulitmate trust in Him, a life committed to serving Him by sharing Jesus with others, a life of putting the cross before me and the world behind me.

Would I change my mind if I knew all that back then?

No way.

As a 39-year old woman who has seen happiness and heartache, I would NOT choose to live my life any other way. Jesus is my everything.  He is enough for me.

As we celebrate the birth of Christ, I pray that you will accept the gift of Jesus; that you will give your life to Him.  I pray that you will surrender everything to Him; that you will give up all that you hold so tightly.  Christ is all you need.  May you realize that the only gift you need this Christmas comes wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.

 

This song “Christ is Enough” by Hillsong is one of my favorites.  I know it’s not a Christmas song, but it reminded me tonight of the gift God gave us in Jesus.  It reminded me of the day I decided to accept this gift and follow Jesus.  May you give your life to Jesus and know that He will richly bless those who follow Him.

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