I’ve struggled with writing my blog lately. Recently, I even thought maybe, I would just stop writing. I feel God has made it very clear to me that isn’t an option. So, as I was pondering the last few weeks, I thought about the world and all the turmoil going on right now. I thought about a friend who is going through a really rough time, I thought about the church shooting that just happened and that mass shootings seem to be an almost regular event anymore. I thought about my job and the hurt and pain that people struggle with on a daily basis to the point they want to take their own lives. I remembered, my purpose in writing this blog is because people need Jesus!!
There is so much hurt and heartache in the world today. I sit and think about all of the yuck in this world and I remember when I was there. Hurt, broken, feeling worthless and hopeless. When I opened myself up to the love of Christ, when I heard that it didn’t matter to Him all of the horrible things I felt I had done, He still loved me, it changed my entire world. In the past I would have told you I knew who Jesus was, and I believed in Him, and I tried to live a good life. But having a relationship and opening yourself up to God’s love is different, it changes you, it changes your world.
I try not to be political in my blog. I try to just focus on my religious experiences. But as I think about the state of the world today, I can’t help but take more of a political stance. I’ve seen a quote many times that says you don’t need religion to have morals, and while I don’t disagree with that, I feel as a society as we work to remove God from our culture, our morals are going by the way side. I have worked in a school and worked in a prison and it blows my mind that we discourage kids from freely pursuing and practicing their faith in school. We put many barriers in their way and yet if you are in prison, religion is encouraged. I remember sitting in parole hearings and listening to inmates talk about going to church and Bible studies and how God was changing their lives. One of my many hats at the prison was the religious coordinator, I oversaw all religious activities and made sure all religious volunteers were in compliance with facility policies. Just imagine if we put that much energy into assisting the development of spirituality and religion for our children. Maybe we wouldn’t have the struggles we have now.
I’ll be honest, there were many different religions in prison, and several weren’t Christian based, and I could tell those who were genuine in their pursuit of a relationship with Christ and those who weren’t. The difference was, their lives, even in prison, just seemed to go better. They didn’t get in trouble with the jail staff, they followed the rules, and they didn’t argue. They were accepting of their situation and if something didn’t go their way or if they felt they had been wronged, they had a conversation with the staff and tried to work it out. They were different. Their hearts were different.
There is truly something amazing that happens when you give your life over to God. When you are willing to accept that He has a plan and a purpose for you it changes your perspective and changes your heart. I know when I came to that realization, I wanted to know God more, I wanted to know everything I could, I read devotionals, Bible studies, I listened to sermons on the Radio. I began to develop a relationship with this God, who before seemed so scary and condemning, but as I learned more about Him, was loving and kind. It blew my mind as I read the Bible and learned about the people he chose to spread his message. The people he chose to be the ones that would represent Him. They were not perfect people who always did right. They were very much sinners. But…They all had one thing in common. They all loved God. They had a relationship with God and they pursued Him. They wanted to please their God. And although they made mistakes and struggled with their sin, they still pursued Him. It wasn’t just because they believed in Him, it’s because they had a relationship with Him.
In today’s world, God is a foreign concept. Society teaches trusting in God is a weakness. In today’s world, we want to be our own gods. It’s heart breaking to me. As I watch people struggle, I think, “You need Jesus!!” And I struggle to say anything for fear that they will condemn me or make fun of me. I can say, “You need Jesus!!” on my blog because it’s not face to face. That’s easy. And yet, I know that’s what I need to do.
The thing that needs to change most in this world is we need to get back to the basics. The 10 Commandments, the Beatitudes, and having a relationship with the Creator of the Universe. The problems in this world are not about race, religion, sexual orientation, politics, gun control, or any other social issue the media wants to glorify or criticize at the moment. It’s about the heart. It is what is important to us as a society and where our priorities lie. Matthew 6:21 says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”. In today’s world our hearts are anywhere but with Jesus.
I’m just a Small Town Girl… living in a world in need of Jesus!