Have you seen the news this week? Apparently the Pope is coming to America today (on his 81st birthday). And it is all people can talk about. I just caught a few minutes of the Today Show and Matt was interviewing a Cardinal from the Vatican. Matt asked him about Pope Benedict and what people should know about him. He responded by saying that the Pope would want us to know that religion is a great source of peace, happiness, contentment and a few other things. I was so sad. And I wanted to scream, “IT’S NOT ABOUT RELIGION. IT’S ABOUT A RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS!!!” I don’t know much about Catholicism. But I do know that the act of having to go through a priest to confess your sins makes it seem like there is no way to have a relationship with God and his son, Jesus. It just saddens me so much to know that people really are missing it.
In John 14:6 Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” It is just so clear! The way to God the Father is through Jesus the Son! Not through a priest. I appreciate that the Catholic church takes a stand on issues like divorce and abortion. Those are very important moral issues. But those that will spend an eternity in heaven with our Creator are those who have a personal relationship with him. Not those that take a positive stand on moral issues. I am so grateful that God adopted me into his family. He chose me to be his daughter. He made a way, through Jesus, for me to know him. Oh, I feel so blessed to know Him. I don’t just know someone who knows him. I KNOW HIM, MYSELF!! And we have the most wonderful relationship.
If you are reading this and you do not have a personal relationship with Jesus, please read these words of Paul from Romans.
1. Romans 3:23 – “. . . for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” We are ALL sinners and therefore separated from God.
2. Romans 5:8 – “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
3. Romans 6:23 – “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
4. Romans 10:9-10 “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.”
Being a “Christian” is more than just going to church or even believing that God is real. It is realizing that you are a sinner in need of a Savior. It is acknowledging that that you are sinful. It is understanding that the payment for your sin is that you will be separated forever from God (hell). It is believing that God gave his son, Jesus, who died on the cross and rose again. It is understanding that when Jesus died on the cross, he paid the debt for us so that we could know God and spend eternity with Him. It is knowing that God desires to know you and for you to know him PERSONALLY. Oh, how I pray that people would come to know God through Jesus. That you could experience what it is like to know the Creator of the universe. And that He would change your life in ways that you could never imagine!
God, open our eyes that we may see you. Please help us live our lives so that others will look at us and want to know what is different. Please help us to show your love to others that they may desire to know the One who loves us so much! Amen.