Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My testimony on Easter Sunday

I accepted Jesus as my Savior when I was 20 years old and soon thereafter got baptized...I was filled with enthusiasm for my new faith but quickly got sidetracked. The church I was in helped to direct that enthusiasm not into developing a closer relationship with God but rather in ‘stuff’....The focus became rules of ‘do this, don’t do that..here’s a list, check it off as you go’ kind of stuff.  Alot of it wasn’t bad, per se, but over time that focus seemed to overshadow the power of what the scriptures said. And a lot of the time it even took a place of real importance ABOVE God’s word.
   I can’t stress enough what a really big deal this was..It was in every aspect of my life from what you wore to who your friends should be,  to the point that common sense didn’t even have a say in things at times. And to question anything or to express your opinion was NOT an option..... It was a very heavy mantle of rules & things to do that I was carrying. And yet, I was under this bondage but at the time I didn’t even realize it.....But God kept putting the right people in my path that got me to thinking more for myself instead of relying on someone else to tell me what I should be thinking....and there came a point when it was just like in the scriptures when the scales fell off the man’s eyes, I was able to see things as they really were. And when that happened, I read the scriptures with my new eyes & my prayers totally changed as well....they went from being of a superficial nature to “I surrender, change me Lord, I want to know YOU more, please use me in YOUR will”....and from that point on, things were no longer complicated for me in my faith. I am reminded of the scripture in Matthew 11:30 that says "my yoke is easy and my burden is light"...
  Not only did He free me from the bondages of 'check lists’ & rules that were imposed upon me, But through His love & grace he has also released me from the baggage of bitterness, hurt, anger and everything else from that past as well. And when my hands weren’t so full from carrying that baggage, I was free and released to do what I wanted to do all along which was to follow Jesus and His example. He never meant for it to be complicated.

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