More Than a Religion

I don’t know how you view God. Maybe you were taught to think of Him as a Judge Who has no interest in our lives but only desires to condemn. Or maybe you were taught to believe that if you’re good enough, He’ll let you into heaven.

Or maybe, like me, you thought that your straight way ticket out of hell was to accept Jesus into your heart, but that after you do that, you’re done. You don’t really need to think about God and all things eternal while you’re here on earth, aside from, of course, occasionally reading the Bible and praying once a day.

Trust me, I’ve been there. Years ago, I thought that Christianity was all about religion and about being a good person, when actually, it’s a relationship with the God of the universe.

When I first accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior years ago, I didn’t understand Who He truly was. My view of God was warped and twisted. I thought that I needed to earn His favor, that I needed to be good enough to go to Heaven. I only saw Him as a Judge but not as a Friend, Father, Comforter, or Healer. To me, He was just a Being up in the Cosmos that I had to obey if I wanted to go to Heaven when I died.

Those of you who know me personally may be surprised to discover that I thought this way, but yes, I did.

I’ve had people come to me and tell me that they admire my loyalty to my religion and how glad they are that I have it all figured out.

My friend, let me clarify. I did not find Jesus. I think it’s more accurate to say that He found me. And for the record, I do not have it all figured out. I’m still learning what it means to have a relationship with God. What it means to love Him above all else.

Dear friend, if you think that following Jesus is all about a set of rules or about having a religion, please know that that is not so. Yes, God has rules in place because He loves us, but being a Christian is so much more that.

God is so, so much more than that.

After spending time in His Word over the past several years, I’ve realized that He loves us. The God of the Universe wants a relationship with you and me. He doesn’t ask us to have all the answers or to have it all figured out; He is the answer.

I urge you, friend, if you think God doesn’t love you or that He has no interest in your life, please think again. Don’t just accept Jesus into your heart and allow him to live in the corner while you still live the way you want to.

God wants to change us. He wants to mold us.

He wants us to live a fulfilling life but to do that, we must let God lead.

Letting God lead sometimes means letting go. But trust me, the kind of life you will live is more than worth it.

As I read God’s Love Letter to all of us, the Bible, I am realizing that maybe the young girl in me had it all wrong. I am learning that God is not just out there and unconcerned with my life; He cares about me, and believe it or not, He cares deeply about you as well.

Jesus says in Matthew 10:29-31 (ESV), “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs on your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

I am learning that the great God I serve is more than I ever thought He is.

NOTE: If you’re interested, please take a listen to the song, More Than You Think I Am by artist and musician, Danny Gokey. Written as if God is singing to us, it is a beautiful piece of music that gives us just a taste of how much God loves us.

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