Growing up in Southeast Tennessee, I went to church, Sunday school classes and Vacation Bible School with my parents and was taught the beliefs about God I hold precious today. I was taught from the Holy Bible to respect all people regardless of their religious beliefs, color of skin, looks, age, wealth, or nationality. The people who taught me the word of God took the teaching of the truth to children, adolescents and adults very seriously and taught me the word of God using the Holy Bible (John 8: 31-32 ). They also took the following of Jesus Christ seriously and lived and live their lives as an example of someone who followed Jesus.
I first accepted Jesus Christ as my savior when I was eleven years old however going into my mid adolescence I did not at all times act as a Christian which means that in reality, I did not act at all like a true Christian. I was a hypocrite in my thoughts and actions and it lasted from my mid adolescence to later into my adult life.
Even though I knew and understood what I was doing was wrong and against Jesus’ teachings, I did it anyway just because I wanted to do it. I wanted to do it because I enjoyed doing what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it. I wanted to do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it and that’s what I did. I did not listen to anyone’s advice as I knew what it was I wanted to do and they did not. So I did what I wanted to do whether or not it hurt someone or not because I at that time did not care about anyone but me; I did not even care about God’s will for me.
Although I did not plan to do so, along the way I know that I deluded the truth to many people around me hearing my words and seeing my actions because I was deluding the truth to myself. The delusion of truth I created around me caused turmoil in my thinking and the longer I let myself think what I was thinking was true, it was only true to the point which I could suppress my conscience thought because deep inside I knew that I was living in a self-made delusion yet I just didn’t want to admit to myself that I was; and so, I did not admit it to myself.
I did not admit it to myself because I wanted to continue to believe that what I was doing was okay to do. I kept justifying what I was doing to myself. In all these things that I was doing I kept saying that they were really okay because everyone else was doing it and that with everyone else doing it, it must be okay for me too. My “everyone” included the worldly peers who were doing it, movies and TV showing and doing it and songs telling about it. The temptations were all there for me to choose to do and with many examples to follow, I made my choice.
In reality however; I was lying to myself to suppress the truth. The longer I lied to myself the easier it got for me to lie to not only myself but to others as well. My initial lie to myself grew to include other lies which included me lying to other people verbally and/or in my actions. All along the way I also continued to tell myself and others that I was a Christian.
From underage drinking, to some experimental drug sampling, totally reckless driving, taking advantage of family and friends, theft, planning a murder (shortly after my father was murdered) and sexual addiction among more terrible things I did that were all and still are against God’s will anyone to do, I did. During this time I easily broke each of the “Ten Commandments” and did not think much of breaking any of them either. After all, I said that I was a Christian.
On and on I went lying until one day I came to my senses and realized that I had become someone I did not want to be. Not only did I realize that I had become someone I did not want to be, I realized that I had become someone who I did not want to be around because I realized that I was not able to trust myself when I caught myself planning to take someone’s life in revenge of my father’s murder.
That day I admitted the truth to myself and to God that I was a liar. I confessed to God that I should not be acting as I was because I know the truth. I asked God for forgiveness and through the loving gift of His only begotten Son Jesus’ death on a cross and resurrection, God forgives me because I repented of and repent of the sins I commit (Romans 5:8 ).
I praise and give glory to God for giving me a second chance in that during those times when I was not in step with His Son, Jesus, He did not let me die an eternal death (Romans 6:23). I praise God and thank Him so for getting me over my addictions. I thank God for bringing to me a few years later a wonderful and precious blessing who is also founded in His love, my wife. I praise and give honor to God with every breath and heartbeat of my being for His love, mercy and grace.
To those I harmed in act and/or in thought while I was going against the will of God, I have no excuse for the hurtful thoughts, words and actions that I used against you which caused you pain and suffering that you may not realize came from me. I did it for my own personal gain and/or pleasure. My selfish desires were what I let be my idol to which I faithfully followed. My selfish idolization of myself caused pain and suffering to those who called me friend, to my family, coworkers and countless others who encountered me during that time in my life.
I ask forgiveness of you whom I have done wrong if I have not already personally asked forgiveness from you. It was totally selfish of me to do what I did to you and, I was wrong to do it. I know that I do not deserve your forgiveness but please find it in your heart to forgive me (Matthew 6:14).
Although along the way to and into my adult life I strayed, the early lessons I was taught from the Holy Bible, laid the Christian foundation which opened my eyes, saving me from an eternal death. I live my life today and will live for the rest of my life on earth following Christ Jesus. I chose and choose to forgo my God given free will to do as I please so to freely follow the will of God (Matthew 10:38). You making a choice to follow God’s will for you is something which only you can make for yourself.
Have you honestly read the Holy Bible for yourself? If not, then you most likely have some wrong information about it and thus do not truly know what it says. My request of you is that you be honestly open minded to reading and learning the truth about Christ Jesus’ love for you and true views on the Christian faith, morality and God. If you honestly truly seek to find and know God, you will.
God made these promises to us among many others:
Proverbs 8:17 – “I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me.”
Jeremiah 29:13 – `You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
Jesus said in Revelation 3:20 – `Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.