New Year, New Hope

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I wanted to start off the new year by saying that if you have never read anything I had written in 2014, don’t worry because all you need to know is that for the year 2015 I will be proclaiming Jesus Christ as redeemer of my life and will be keeping you updated on all the amazing blessings and transformations he has planned for me throughout the next 364 days. This past year definitely had its ups and downs, and I have goals for this year. But, the past is not important and I cannot determine my future despite all the plans I may form and attempt to execute. What matters to me now is the present and the fact that I have this unreal pressing on my heart to proclaim the validity of my Christian faith to the world and especially my friends.

My friends…Oh man, how I love them!

My number one goal for the new year is to see God work in the lives of my friends. My number one goal is to show them how really real God is and how true his love and forgiveness are by living an example. This is the hard part. I have not been the ideal Christian. I have smoked weed. I have had sex outside of marriage. I have cursed like a sailor. I have lied. I have done and written many things that contradict the principles laid out in the Bible – the spiritual foundation of Truth. I am the ultimate hypocrite and my friends are my eye-witnesses. But if I can prove anything, I can prove that I have changed and this change was not something I accomplished on my own. I have changed because God woke me up and saved me. I thought I was a Christian before, but I wasn’t. I thought I knew what I believed and could stand up for it, but I didn’t and couldn’t. I couldn’t even tell my friends the honest truth. How is that love?

I know for certain now that belief in Christ is the only way to truth and understanding and life after death, and he has placed an urgency in my soul to see my friends understand him and accept love even when they don’t feel deserving. I’m not deserving either, but I’m not afraid to show how the truth has changed my life so drastically even in the last 3 months. I proclaimed my faith to my bestfriend and told her that I would stand firm because I know she deserve to hear the truth despite the fear that coursed through me when I did. I broke the heart of someone I cared for intensely because I knew we were sinning and I would not allow myself to continue bringing sin into his life because he deserves to know what true love is. I smashed my pipe and threw my dope in the trash because I knew that it was at the heart of my spiritual issues and was forcing me to cling to my past mistakes.

No matter the political unrest in the world – the violence, the hatred, the anger and war – my friends are more important to me. To know that I have been given the key to life and to see them still in dark…cuts me deep. One of my friends actually reads this blog because he’s just that supportive and awesome, and he would say I have the right to believe what I believe, but he doesn’t believe that I speak truth…only personal opinion. It is the same with my bestfriend. A few nights ago, she and I had a very heated discussion about God and faith and truth. What came to light is the fact that we love each other immensely and have both been hurt immensely. I love her so much, but I can’t heal her wounds. That kills me more than anything, I think. I love all my friends. I would give my life for my friends – for them to see the truth of God’s love. But…it seems that I cannot help them see that my love stems from the all-encompassing love of God. I wish they could see how much more God loves them than even I do. I wish that truth more than opinion to them. I wish that they could experience the knee-buckling peace that comes with understanding God’s grace.

I wish that for you too.

For everyone. And, I am going to do my best in the grand year 2015 to help God reveal himself by physically and verbally expressing the change I have experienced. This change has made me free! God has made me free! Free to love and hope and weep and endure because I know that he “works all things towards good for those who love God”. I can no longer remain silent because to be silent would do more harm than good even if my friends can’t see it yet. I love them more by making them face truth eye-to-eye through me than by hoping someone else comes along who maybe has the balls to speak honestly with them. If I won’t rip the band-aid off, God can’t heal the wound.

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Romans 5: 1-11

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God though our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained accessed by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die – but God shows his love for us in the while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.”

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