Sunday, June 21, 2009

Preparing for the Future

For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:16

Eternity waits for those who know the Savior. Those that have embraced the free gift of God have the Lord's promise. In God's good time the believer is translated to that glorious place, where there is no crying, no pain, but only joy in the Master's presence. Death becomes the doorway to glory. When we lose someone we love, the experience is bitter-sweet. We are glad our loved one has gone on to be with the Lord, but we fervently desire to be with him or her once again.

It's important for us to plan for the future. We labor to make sure we have enough savings for our retirement. Those that have children desire to offer assistance towards their life and education. It's important to plan. But it is even more important to make sure we're ready for the next life. Every one of us will one day die.

But how do we secure for ourselves a home in heaven. Living a moral life does not guarantee us a place in heaven and neither does faithful church attendance. Eternal life is gift and it can only be received by placing our trust in Jesus. God the Father gave his one and only Son so that we would not perish, but so that we could have eternal life. When we accept Christ's death on the cross as payment for our sins, we become heirs of heaven. We must believe that salvation comes to us through the grace of God alone. We cannot earn our way to heaven. When we receive God's gift of grace, He changes our hearts. Then we begin to reflect Him in our actions out of gratitude for all He's done for us.

Just recently my father-in-law passed away. My wife Lou has so many good memories of him. Her father loved Lou very much, and she loved him. He will be greatly missed. The wonderful news is that Lou's father accepted Jesus as His Lord and Savior. Because of this we know he is in heaven. One day we will see him, and our days together will never end. You too can own this promise. Jesus offers all of us a relationship with Him and the sure hope of an eternal home in heaven.

It is God's will for everyone to go to heaven, but not everyone will live there when they die. We can choose to receive God's gift of salvation or we can choose to live apart from God for all eternity in a place called hell. This is not pleasant to think about, but it is a reality. We all have been given a choice. Let's surrender our lives to the one who truly loves us. If you would like to receive God's wonderful gift of salvation, please pray a prayer like the one below and prepare for your future...

Dear Lord of Heaven,

Thank you for dying for me on the cross. Thank you for offering me your gift of eternal life. I believe you rose from the dead to give me new life. I recognize that I am a sinner and that I need your saving grace. Thank you for forgiving me of my sins. I accept your gift of salvation and I choose to follow you all my days here on earth. You are my Lord and Savior. I believe that you have change me and will help me to develop a relationship with you. Lord I thank you that one day I will see you face to face in heaven. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen.

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