Sometimes Christians are not sure if they are following God and the question pops up: Am I a real Christian? Does just because I’m a good person make me automatically a Christian? Will my life be easy if I follow Christ? Here is some great guidance for Christian singles who want to actively follow Jesus in their daily lives.
Dear Jim: Am I really a Christian?
It’s easy to fall into the assumption when one writes for a Christian dating site that all reading the articles are Christians. God has provided an awesome gift available to all – but not all have received it. Allow me to share some thoughts in how I believe this is the ultimate experience.
- Many live in a ‘Christian’ community or nation or strive to live by good morals and believe that this makes them automatically a Christian. It may be a nice thought, but it is not so. The act of becoming a Christian is understanding the terms of a new citizenship in God’s ‘country’ and accepting the ‘gift’ of an eternal connection with Him.
- God intended for His creation (the world we live in) to be a wonderful garden, a literal paradise. However, if He was to make us in His image (Genesis 1:26) – we could not be robots and had to have the option of making our own choices (freewill).
- I believe the first people on this earth were literally Adam and Eve. Out of their freewill, they were tempted by Satan (a fallen angel from Heaven) to seek their own way apart from God. This ‘seeking their own way/will’ took them apart from the will/way of God for their lives. The Bible calls this action ‘sin’ – a separation from God.
- It was not only Adam and Eve who sinned, but every person born has been born into a sinful nature. If you do not think that this is true, try taking a toy away from a baby. We are ‘naturally’ self-centered and selfish creatures. (Isaiah 53:6)
- There is a price in spiritual terms to be paid for our sins. Romans 6:23 shares that the price for sin is death (in spiritual terms, this means separation from God). This is not God’s desire and He goes to great lengths to convict us through His Spirit. (There are three deities of God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came after Christ left this earth and is God’s presence on this earth. One of His roles is to convict us of our separation from God for the purpose of bringing us to Him.)
- God has provided a way to connect directly with Him through His Son Jesus Christ. Christ came to live in all respects as a man (confronting all the challenges/temptations of life) so that He could be offered as a sacrifice and pay the penalty for our sins. He lived His life without any sin. This is why the death on the cross was so important. An innocent man was provided to pay the perfect price for our sins. Only a perfect man could pay this price – thus only Christ.
- The last part of Romans 6:23 tells us that there is a ‘free gift’ of God for eternal connection with Him THROUGH the act provided by Jesus Christ. GIFT – a gift is something not earned. You and I cannot work for it by any moral act!! It is not a gift if we have to work for it! A gift is not a gift either until it is accepted. It can be a very nice item, but it is not a gift until ‘received’.
- Romans 10: 9 tell us how to accept this gift. ‘If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall have this eternal connection (called salvation).
- Is that it? Romans 10:13 say ‘for whoever will call upon the name of the Lord (Christ) will be saved.” It is an act of faith – not works. This is confirmed in Ephesians 3:8 where the Bible says, ‘For by grace (God’s act of giving us something we do not deserve) you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the GIFT of God.’
Pray about it.
How do you go about doing this? Your will must submit to God’s will for your life. You can do this by praying in your own will some words like the following:
‘Dear God, I do not understand all there is to know about you. However, I do know that I have a sinful nature and can never live my life to pay the price for my sinful acts ( the times that I do not seek your will for my life or know your will but refuse to follow it). I know that you in your love for me and desire to connect personally with me, sent your Son, Jesus Christ, to pay the price for my sins. I believe that you sent Him, that His act of dying was for the price of my sins, and that He arose victorious over death and now sits with you in Heaven. I ask you to adopt me into your family and help me where I need to grow in understanding more of you and being filled by your Holy Spirit. Thank you for this gift of eternal connection! Amen.’
Is it easy to follow Christ?
Finally, in 1 John 1:9 the Bible says ‘if we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
I will not say that living your life as a Christian will be an easy one. I will say that it is a tremendous joy to know that whatever is sent your way in life – God is with you. It was my joy to accept this gift over 55 years ago. I have never regretted it for one moment and can only tell you that His love is the LOVE beyond all loves.
May God guide you in your understanding of Him and to the joy and peace He wants for you.