At the age of 18, I decided that I wanted Jesus in my life.
And now, 16 years later, I still want Jesus in my life.
As a teenager, at a big Church event in Manchester in 2000, I felt Jesus say the words “are you in or are you out?” He was talking about whether I wanted to have Him in my life or not. In or out. Nothing fancy. No fanfare. No high fives. No emotional moment. No anger. No guilt. No yes, buts or maybes. In or out.
I decided in.
I decided ‘in’ for this reason: that I knew enough of God to think that this might be real. That He might exist and that He might want the best for me. I knew some Christians and some of them were great men and great women. Therefore I was willing to give it a go. End of it. Job done.
Fast forward to my mid-thirties and I still decide ‘in’. I have seen God do some amazing things. I have seen Him heal people from illness and injury. I have been healed myself. I have seen people grow and mature into strong, capable individuals who can lead others in the same direction. I have seen people find freedom and wholeness. I have found freedom. I have felt His presence like Him was sitting next to me. A presence that captivates you.
I don’t follow God through fear of what might happen to me. Or through naivety. I don’t follow God because it is comfortable. In fact, quite the opposite, life with Jesus is uncomfortable. In C. S. Lewis’ Narnia series, Susan asks if Aslan is safe. The beavers reply with “Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King.” Jesus is not safe. He does not fit in a 9-5 or a 10 mins here and there. The image of Jesus as a soft man with long flowing locks and a few kids at his feet is so far from the truth it is laughable. Jesus is loud, beautiful and dangerous. But most of all, He is good.
Life with Jesus does demand more from us. Just as a relationship with a spouse or friend takes time to grow and develop, and then demands regular input to keep it going; the same is true with Jesus. Your relationship with Jesus requires regular input. This input may be strong friendships with other Christians, it may be attending church regularly, it may be reading the Bible, it may be praying. But it should be all of these.
I have had questions along the way but I have always decided ‘in’. I came close to quitting on Jesus once and walking away from all that I knew of God. I felt that if things went well, He got the glory. But if thing went bad, I got the blame. But again, I came back to the same answer that I knew enough of God to decide that He was real and good.
But what if I am wrong? What if there is no God, no Devil, no heaven, no hell. You die and that is it….
If that is the case then I have lived a good life with a great marriage and amazing kids, I’ve done right by people, made a difference and had great fun.
But what if I am right? What if there is a God, there is a heaven and only those who know Jesus enter eternal life, and those that don’t, end up thrashing in the pits of hell for eternity….
Then I made the right choice and I pray you come to know Jesus as well.
If you are reading this and you have never asked Jesus into your life, it is one of the easiest things you can ever do. It is a simple prayer, or a call to God, to ask Him to enter your heart.
“Jesus, I ask you to enter my heart and be part of my life.
I want to turn away from the life I had without you.
I want the life you have for me.
I am sorry for any wrongs I have caused you or others.
I give my life over to you.”
It really is that simple.
If you want a normal, simple, safe life then maybe stick to warm cocoa and white toast.
But if you want a beautifully dangerous adventure that can change your life, then Jesus is your man.
p.s. Please feel free to comment, ask or share your thoughts below.