South Africa

#YesGod: The Most Important Yes!

Now you know where #YesGod came from! Now we must learn together why we must say Yes to God, the conditions involved with saying yes, and the benefits of saying yes.

Before you can truly hear God’s plan for your life it is important to know Him well enough to recognize His voice. We must be in tune with God by first agreeing to allow God to be the ruler of our lives. We have to be willing to surrender all and accept Jesus as our Lord and personal Savior. Recently a pastor friend of mine preached on this very topic. He asked these questions of congregation. What does salvation mean? What does it mean to be saved? Salvation is freedom. It is constant and unending love and mercy. It is perfect covering. It is a chance for abundant life. Salvation is also acknowledging that this life is not my own. My life belongs to God, He created me and is free to direct my life as He sees fit. It is also recognizing that we are not perfect. The Bible says in Romans 3:23

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

We are a sinful people. We are all sinners. We were born into sin. Sinning is our very nature. It comes natural. You do not have to teach a child to sin. It is inherent and unfortunately some people spend their entire lives perfecting it. Sin used to be a death sentence. Romans 6:23 says “For the wages of sin is death…” but because of God’s great love for all of us, sin doesn’t have to result in death. Because of God’s great gift to us in His Son we can have the chance at eternal life.

My nephew is almost two years old. Over the holiday season I spent a lot of time with him. He is a very smart little guy with an already independent nature. Basically he has a mind of his own. That is not surprising based on who his parents are…but I digress. My nephew loves balls. Any type of ball will due. Basketballs, footballs, baseballs, softballs, hard balls, big balls, small balls, it doesn’t matter. What he likes even more than balls is throwing these balls, as hard and as far as his little self can manage without falling over. Now there is not any problem with this except he likes to also throw items that are not balls. Like my cell phone. We can all imagine how this situation ended up…despite my warnings not to throw my phone it still somehow ended up on the other side of the room. Does this make my nephew a horrible person? No. Was he disobedient and consequentially sinned? Yes. But since I love him so much, I will not stop being his aunt just because he disobeyed. I love him so much that not only will I forgive him, but I will give him another chance and another chance and another chance. Perhaps I shouldn’t have given my nephew my phone in the first place especially knowing that to him everything is a ball. Even if I have to go out and buy a new phone I will still love my nephew the same.

This is how God views us. This is how salvation works. He knows we are a sinful people. But because He loves us so much He didn’t want our sin to result in death, but He wanted us to have a chance to live and live abundantly. He sent His Son to pay the ultimate price for our sins. Jesus died so we wouldn’t have to. He suffered long and greatly in order for us to live a comfortable life. So He has come to offer us the greatest gift ever to be given and that is salvation. The gift of endless mercy. The gift of unconditional love. The gift of everlasting life in Heaven with Him.

But with any gift that is given, the receiver plays an important part. The receiver has to do just that…receive the gift. They must accept the gift fully and wholeheartedly. Here in South Africa the isiXhosa people know how to properly receive something. No matter what is given, they hold out two empty, open hands to receive what is offered. I think that is so beautiful and a great way we should approach the throne of God. Holding out two empty, open hands ready to receive.

Salvation is offered to each and every one of us. No matter what we have done in the past, currently doing, or will do in the future. It is a gift that Jesus paid for with His blood. It is a gift Jesus bought for all of us! Now we must open both of our hands ready to freely receive this great gift. We must say Yes to God and Yes to salvation.

I am praying that all who read this will say the most important Yes of their lives…and that is a Yes to God and the gift of Salvation. If you are not saved and want to receive this gift with two, empty open hands you must first acknowledge that God is real and that Jesus died on the cross to save a sinner like you and me. Romans 10: 9 says “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord’, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”  Then you must declare that you have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. None of us are perfect, if we were we wouldn’t need Salvation! Finally pray this prayer with me to declare God ruler of your life.

Father God, I come before you declaring you are the God of all. Father, I know that I have broken your commands and sinned against You, but today I choose to surrender my life to You and allow You to be ruler of my life. I believe that Your Son, Jesus Christ, died for my sins, was resurrected, and is alive! I invite Jesus into my heart, to live and reign over my life forever. I receive this precious gift with two, empty open hands. Please send Your Holy Spirit to help me to obey You and to do Your will all the days of my life. I love you Lord. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Congratulations! Welcome into the body of believers! Your new life in Christ can now begin. You are a new creature. The old is gone and the new is hear! It is so vital that you get connected with a local church where you can study God’s word and be connected with other believers. This journey is not easy, but with the covering of God’s love and with the Holy Spirit as your guide it will all be worth it! Stay encouraged and check back next week for the next installment in the #YesGod series!

God Is Mindful,

Sarah

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