Archive for the ‘My Conversion’ Category

Thanks Be Unto God For His Unspeakable Gift

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I think of  the many, many, many blessings that the Lord has heaped upon me my whole life, how can I not thank Him?  In my opinion, a Christian lives and breathes “an attitude of gratitude.”  When I was young my God gave me the greatest gift I could ever think of or wish for.  Let me tell you about it.

 

I remember as a young child having a hunger for the Lord in my life, though I didn’t understand what that was then.  I was schooled well in my religion but never heard how Jesus could be my very own personal Saviour .  My Dad would see to it that we kids would go to church even if he didn’t go.

 

Easter was a big deal, and the whole family would go to church.  We would get new hats and gloves and new dresses; my brother would get a white shirt and suit and tie.  One year mom made my younger sisters beautiful matching pink dresses with white collars. I was reminiscing with my mom about this and asked if she remembered how we would wear our Easter clothes, even if it snowed, underneath our winter coats.   She remembered and laughed.  We were too excited not to wear our new spring clothes.

MY SISTERS POSING WITH DAD IN THEIR PINK DRESSES

 

Being from beautiful Colorado, our family spent a lot of time in the mountains, not only in the summertime, but in the winter as well.  There was a route we would take to get there and we would pass a church that had these very gripping words on their sign, “Where  Will You Spend Eternity?  I was just a kid, but those words frightened me very much because I didn’t know the answer.  After I read it the first time, it was inscribed, on my mind.  Afterward, whenever we would pass that church I would turn my head away so I wouldn’t see it. No matter, it was still there in my mind’s eye.

I was very much afraid to die as a child because I didn’t know where I was going.  Was I good enough to go to purgatory?  Or was I so bad I would just go to hell?  Surely I wasn’t good enough to go to heaven.  It was a real torment to my young mind.

Time went on and the hunger in my soul was still very much alive.  I was a young teen and one Sunday I specifically remember  my family planned to go to the mountains and I asked my dad if he would get me back around six o’clock in the evening so I could go to church.  He said he  would, and had me back in time.  He was attentive to my spiritual desire.  My dad and  uncle Willie, my dad’s only living sibling, would often talk about religion.  They had lots to say about it, but had no real answers.

DAD AND UNCLE WILLIE

 

One time after going to church, I stopped at the elementary school where I had attended grade school and was swinging on the playground swing.  In my heart I told the Lord, “I  don’t understand why I don’t feel satisfied or something.  I’m doing everything I know to do yet I still don’t feel any better.  I go to church but……..”   I had such emptiness inside.

Sometime later, I was visiting with a family friend of mine whose name was Laura and her husband Eddie.  (Her dad and my dad were friends as teenagers and our families did fun stuff together).  This young couple recently had given their hearts to the Lord and Eddie was especially eager to share his experience.  First he took me to John 3 where Jesus was telling Nicodemus, in verse 3 …“Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”  I didn’t understand this verse.  I told him ,”I am catholic and we are the only ones that are going to heaven.  He  asked me if I believed the Bible.  I said, “everyone believes the Bible.”  At least that’s what I thought.  He showed me another scripture where Jesus said,  “call no man father upon the earth.”  He didn’t really know how to lead me in the sinner’s prayer but instead said,”don’t take my word for it.  When we leave just pray and invite the Lord into your heart.”  Do you know I did just that, but became afraid.  I thought, “what if I’m doing the wrong thing?”

A short time later, Eddie was out of a job, so I asked him and Laura to stop by my house because I had made up some bags of food for them.  It was a Sunday afternoon and they were going to a crusade at the city auditorium.  They didn’t invite me, I invited myself.  Eddie was surprised and asked me, “you want to go?”

Our seats were pretty high up in the balcony as I recall.  Before the preacher started his sermon he prayed for the sick collectively.  He said those that wanted prayer to stand and lay their hand on their body where they were needing prayer.  Laura stood and put her hand on her other hand where she had a cyst.  Well, there I sat and wondered, “what have I gotten myself into?”  It was so different from what I was used to for double sure.

ME AND LAURA

I couldn’t tell you what he preached about.  I was very nervous and questioned “why in the world had I come?”  It was so strange to me, and then, the next thing I knew, tears were rolling down my face and I was trying to wipe them off.  I was so embarrassed!  I couldn’t believe I was crying in public!  What in the world was wrong with me?  I didn’t know that the Holy Spirit was dealing with my heart.  The preacher made an appeal for all those who wanted to accept Christ into their hearts to come  down to a designated place  where there would be people waiting to pray with those who came.  I was among those that wanted to invite Jesus into their hearts.  For me it was as if the Lord had me by the hand and walked with me down those many, many red carpeted steps.  My tears flowed freely.  We were shown to a place where old wooden folding chairs were opened and we knelt before them to pray.  That was my altar.  A dear Christian lady knelt with me and instructed me on how to invite Jesus into my heart.  I don’t remember her exact words, but they were probably something like this:  “Lord Jesus, forgive me of my sins.  I believe you died for me.  Come into my heart.”  So simple but sooo real!  As I prayed there that day, I knew that Jesus had truly come into my heart and that it was what I had been searching for all my life.  My life changed.  I had been born again!  Hallelujah!  I was so hungry for the Word of God I devoured it day and night.  I let things go and just spent time reading, reading, reading God’s Word.  Everything looked new.  I was saved!  Praise God I was saved.  Saved from what?  Well from sin first of all.  Then I was saved from the torment of not knowing where I was going to spend eternity.  God’s wonderful Word clearly showed me that with Jesus in my heart, I was going to spend eternity with Him.  What an unspeakable gift!  Now you know why I love my God so much.  He has done so much for me!

I hope you have a very blessed Thanksgiving with family and friends.  The Lord has been so very good to us.  Also I appreciate my sister Shirley for digging into Mom’s photo albums for these old black and whites from the “olden days” and emailing them to me.

Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift.  II Corinthians 9:15

 

 

 

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Posted November 24, 2011 by Nin Ashmore in My Conversion

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