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With or Without....

You've driven up to the speaker and the huge lit up menu board of LIFE. So many things to choose. School? College? Marriage.... who? Career? Friends?

Ummm... there's an option for Jesus or No Jesus. Which do you choose? You start asking questions across the scratchy sound system to the order taker inside.

"So, can you tell me what the big difference is between a life with Jesus or a life without Jesus?"

I'm glad you ask because I have lived both ways (not proud of this, just honest). In fact, I've lived both ways several times in my 55 years so I've got a little experience with this one.

As a preachers kid I grew up in the church. I grew up knowing who Jesus is. I knew what salvation from my sins were. I knew the true meaning of why we celebrated Christmas and Easter. These things I knew and understood and experienced. So why in my early 20s did I find myself traveling down the party road? Soon to meet and marry the wrong man. Experiencing pain never intended for me.

I can give a clear answer to that question. My feet and heart were not firmly planted in the Word. My relationship with the Lord Jesus was shallow and not consistent. I left myself wide open for all kinds of worldly junk to enter in.

Fast forward to age 29. I open my heart again to Christ Jesus. I beg for his wonderful forgiveness, picking up my Bible, I choose Jesus.

I diligently serve my Lord for years. Staying on my knees and in the Word. Then.... life gets busy, new demands, illness, kids, farm, business, the list gets long of those things that demand my time and attention. My sweet time with Jesus got less and less. Stopped attending church, allowing silly church hurts to keep me away (totally a skeem of the devil..... by the way he has many!)

Next thing you know my life is choking from the weeds and thick brush of sin. I've backsliden into a life WITHOUT Jesus.

Without Jesus is a life of the devil. We discussed that recently in Bible study. There are only two options to whom we serve in this life. You either choose Jesus Christ or you are a servant for the devil. There are no other options.

So here I am in my late 40s once again traveling down the road of sin and destruction. Angry, hurt, hanging with the wrong people doing the next wrong thing. I wanted so much to have peace again. So much I desired that comfort that I knew existed in the arms of my Savior. I knew the way, I had been there before. I turn back to the One I was taught about by my parents. The One that I knew my dad spoke to every single morning, bringing each family member before Him for His care and redemption.

Jesus was there with open arms to welcome me home.

The journey begins again to live my life for Jesus. The desire to have love and kindness in my heart... not anger and hurt. These things take time for healing of ugly wounds. Time studying the Word, time in prayer learning the heart of the Father.

I've been connected to my Heavenly Father long enough now to be able to explain to you a clear defined difference in life with Jesus and a life without.

With Jesus I have an anchor that can not be moved. When storms get brutal in life and the winds and rains are intense I am connected to the creator of the universe. I am grounded deep into His Word and His Purpose for me. No more caving to weakness and flopping around to every trigger that flips sending me into rage or depression. No more cutting my way through those thickets of thorny brush, scratching my skin and ripping at my clothes with every step.

Jesus carries me through lifes trials. Yes there are still trials and difficulties in life. But to face them with Jesus, with the Word, with the power of the blood is empowering.

My relationship with Jesus is my responsibility. He never leaves... period. But as I've done previously, if I step away, if I stop spending time with him I get weak. I don't have the scripture and His voice to guide me and inform me of upcoming trouble. My values and desires change if not delighting in Him and His truth. You see...this option of "With Jesus" is choosing Him to be your closest and dearest friend. Talking with him and sharing with him every moment of life.

This Jesus option also comes SUPER SIZED.... choose all of Him. Get to know Him and seek Him in everything you do and watch the miracles begin to manifest around you. I see Jesus at work in my life, I see miracles happen because I've partnered my life with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. It's down right exciting to witness the power and greatness of a mighty God.

Choose Jesus on this life's journey. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. And if you really want greatness and miracles, super size that!

Dig deep, get real with all of Jesus. Don't settle for that experience years ago from vacation Bible school. Don't believe that because your parents were Christian makes you a Christian. When I use the term to "Super size" means make Him the most important relationship in your life.

"Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! You can make this choice by loving the LORD your God, obeying him, and committing yourself firmly to him. This is the key to your life."

Deuteronomy 30: 19-20 NLT (portions of verses 19-20)

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