In reminiscing about my past, trying to make sense of the blatant contractions, I’ve come to realize a hard truth. Let me start at the beginning.
I was raised in a new age family. My dad did psychic readings for money. I was indifferent to religion. This changed however when I met J. Her family was deeply religious, at least at face value. They didn’t like me, an unchurched heathen dating and leading astray their daughter, to make matters worse, I was from a very poor family.
To appease J’s family, I agreed to attend church with them. A Missouri Synod Lutheran church. I attended every Sunday and felt at home at the church. I started to read the bible and study theology. I got very involved in the church and really enjoyed it. Even being an elder, youth group leader and toying with the idea of entering the ministry. I had become a follower of Christ…so I thought.
I was baptized on my 30th birthday into Christ for the forgiveness of sins. I was in! I continued to live life and attend church. J and I got married and I began working in the oilfield. My lifestyle and my newly found faith seemed rather contradictory. Hey, no big deal, I was baptized after all.
Years of drinking, disobence and selfishness resulted in hopelessness, and an eventual suicide attempt involving a twelvegauge shotgun. Why?! I was a Christian afterall…well, perhaps not quite.
I worked insane hours, made lots of money and drank and partied regularly. As Mark 4:9 states, “but the worries of this age, the deceitfullness of wealth, and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. “
“other things” being the lusts of this world: the pleasures of sex, alcohol, drugs, pride and “general desires of the flesh.” The word was choked from bearing fruit in my life…I was …not a Christian.
Wait, you mean I can’t go on living as I want and rest assured in the mercy of God in Christ?! I couldn’t deny the Lord’s lordship and have a “get out of jail free card” from hell? Jesus was not my Lord in any sense of the word. I studied and excelled in learning Christian doctrine and theology, but my heart was far from the savior. I did not know the Savior.
“Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked. For whatever a person sows he will also reap, because the one who sows to the flesh will reap destruction from the flesh, but the one who sows to the spirit will reap eternal life from the spirit.” (Galatians 6:7-8)
I had never been born again (John 3:3). Jesus had no Lordship in my life. I had created a “god” of my making, in my own image. He forgave me, gave me a get out of jail free card from hell and acted as a cosmic Santa claus. I had deceived myself, created an idol in my own image, and led a life of utter ungodliness.
Salvation is found in Christ Jesus alone. I wasn’t lost because I sinned, I never was a Christian I evidenced no fruit because I had no new spirit to produce it. I trusted in my religiousity, my baptism to save me. Having come to true faith in the Only Savior the Lord Jesus Christ, I am fogiven, saved from God’s wrarh.