THE GOOD NEWS IS...

I'm fascinated with the early 1900's.  I treasure every story my dad told about growing up in the Depression and the problems - and the many blessings - that accompanied. I still laugh as I recall my father-in-law recanting his tall tales of life before indoor plumbing or my mother-in-law sharing how she would catch, slaughter, and cook a chicken for Sunday dinner. Folks in the Progressive Era, as historians refer to that time period, had to possess incredible fortitude. Since the Progressive Era, everything from antibiotics to the iPad has been invented. I can't imagine living without the calculator, email, GPS, and all the other tools that make daily life easier.

YET I COMPLAIN.

I complain that I must crawl out of my warm bed and walk ten steps to use the restroom. I complain that I have to walk to the washing machine and put the clothes in the dryer. I complain that the computer is too slow, the GPS gave me wrong directions, and the conversation I was having as I traveled down the highway was dropped, forcing me to push one button that dialed the number again for me.

Blood on the doorpost

Animal sacrifices

Wandering for 40 years

Living with plagues and leprosy

Throughout scripture, God tested His followers in many ways. He tested Daniel's faith with an encounter with King Nebuchadnezzar and the fiery furnace. Abraham's allegiance to God was tested when he was asked to sacrifice Isaac. Job was tested when he lost everything from his health to his wealth, and even Jesus was tested when He asked the cup be taken from him. Those are the major examples of testing that occurred in the Bible, and I can't fathom any of them. In fact, Jesus suffered and died a horrible and cruel death because he loved me so much.

AND YET STILL I COMPLAIN.

Yes, life is tough. It is no secret that we are living in a stressful world. God has been taken out of the public classrooms and the courthouses. It seems some people worry more about saving trees that human lives and the marriage relationship God created is trying to be redefined. The news is inundated with diseases, divorces, debt, and death. But still, submitting to Christ has never been easier. No more sacrificing or circumcising. In fact, rarely does one have to step into a subzero murky lake to surrender. Instead it is a comforting and warm baptistery.

In fact, a life with Christ can be attained by a few steps.

1.      Believe - He then brought them out and asked, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus.”  - Acts 16:30-31

2.      Confess - Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. - Matthew 10:32

3.      Repent - When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do?" Peter replied, "Repent.” - Acts 2:37-38

4.      Be Baptized - Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day -about 3,000 in all. - Acts 2:41

Peter replied, "Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” - Acts 2:38

What are you waiting for? Get up and be baptized. Have your sins washed away by calling on the name of the Lord.' - Acts 22:16

THE GOOD NEWS

God has provided a way for us to have eternal life – and to accept His gift doesn’t require animal sacrifices or physical pain. It’s a matter of surrendering. Just as the iPad and GPS haven't taken care of all our problems, a life with Christ won't take away all our problems either. He tells us we will have trouble in this world. The greatest news of all however is that if we have life in Him, there will be a day our troubles will be over for good. And I can promise that our current life with all our technology, exciting entertainment and modern conveniences will pale in comparison to an eternal life with our Father in Heaven.