I had the most awesome experience at a doctor’s office recently. I was there to get Botox for my migraines and was seeing a doctor I hadn’t seen before. I heard him say goodbye to the patient next door by saying, “Have a blessed day.” That peaked my curiosity. When he came in to see me, I told him I wanted to get the migraines under control before my upcoming surgery and how nervous I was about this surgery. After he finished the Botox injections (ouch!), he look at me and said, “I don’t know your life views or anything like that, but Easter is this weekend. What do you think about that? Truth or a bunch of hooey?” I looked him square in the eye and said, “I believe Jesus died for my sins on that cross 2,015 years ago with all my heart and soul, and nothing will ever persuade me differently. When I die, I will go to heaven, and I can’t wait!”
Evidently this doctor had been raised as a Seventh-Day Adventist in Colorado. They were taught that man is on top, not God. When they die, they believe they lay in a box. That’s it. They’re done. So, at some point, this doctor’s brother committed suicide by hanging himself. Thinking of his brother just gone, just lying in a box for eternity, was not comforting to him. I don’t know a lot about this religion but the part he was in was pretty radical. Around this same time his wife was being lead to participate a Christian Bible study and asked him to join her. He said “Hell no!” She said “Pretty please?” and so he did. I asked him what happened. He said, “I saw the truth.” I said, so what are you now?”, meaning what religion did he practice, but he surprised me by saying, “Just a dumb-ass Christian saved by Grace.”
What a GREAT visit that was. I feel like we could have talked for hours over this…forget the Botox! A friend’s recent blog entry makes me think of when I was saved by Grace. A lot of people don’t believe young children understand enough to be saved, but I beg to differ. When I was 8 years old, for several Sundays in a row when the alter call was given (I was raised good ‘ole Southern Baptist where the preacher wiped his brow every 5 minutes while preaching the gospel!), I felt this tug at my heart. My heart pounded and I felt like I should go up front. I fought this feeling for at least a month of Sundays. I’m typically shy and didn’t like the thought of going in front of the whole church. Finally, on about the fifth Sunday, the tug and pull was so strong I truly believed that God might strike me mute if I didn’t go forward and proclaim that I believed that he had died for my sins. So I did. I slipped out of the pew, by myself, while the congregation was praying, and went up and knelt at the alter. The preacher came over and we talked. He made very sure that I understood what I was proclaiming. I sobbed greatly with relief. My Mom came to my side and after the altar call, I was presented to the church as a shiny, new Christian. Such a peace came over me at that moment that I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my God was real! And he loved me! I’m glad I remember the day I was saved so vividly; it always puts special joy in my heart because it was the start of my road as a Christian which He has only strengthened during the years.
This Sunday, however you celebrate Easter, think about the true meaning behind the holiday. It’s not just a story, it’s the story of how you and I were saved by Grace. Grace overflowing from God’s son as he sacrificed himself for you and me that we might have eternal life…because we don’t just lie in a box after death. What a beautiful, wonderful memory to have. Do you remember when you were saved? Saved by Grace and the blood of Jesus? Feel free to share if you do!