Friday, August 8, 2014

Tale Of Two Birthdays

This week I celebrated two birthdays.  Monday, August 4th was my 64th physical birthday. Tuesday, August 5th was my 32nd spiritual birthday!

I was born into a wonderful family.  We enjoyed a good and blessed life.  As some of you have heard before, I really was living the American dream for the first 32 years of my life.  However, I had no peace and was afraid of dying.  As I reflect back on those first 32 years of my life, I was a very selfish person who was a slave to sin.  I was constantly at war with God even though I did not know it at the time.  So it was impossible for me to experience any peace when I was not at peace with God.

That all changed on August 5th, 1982.  A couple weeks prior to August 5th, 1982, I had heard (heard with my heart, not just my ears) how I could have peace with God through our Lord, Jesus Christ from Romans 5:1.  After careful thought and consideration, I made a willful, informed, intentional decision to place my faith in Jesus Christ as my Savior and Lord (Boss, Master, and King).  Immediately, I became a new person!  I began to think differently.  I began to act differently.  I began to talk differently.  A peace came upon me and has never left, even in the middle of occasional turmoil.  I desired to tell other folks about the great things the Lord had done for me.  My focus moved from temporary things (things of this world) to eternal things (things of the Kingdom of God).

When I compared the first half of my life with the second half, I see that the first 32 years I walked (lived) in darkness and for the last 32 years I have been walking (living) in the Light. The first half was empty and the second half I have enjoyed a fulfilled life (the abundant life which Jesus promises those who follow Him).  I could go on and on.  If anyone is interested, I would love to tell you more.  Bottom line is, there is no comparison with the first half and the second half of my life.  My only regret is that I did not choose to trust Jesus as my Savior and Lord at a much earlier age.  There certainly would be not as many scars.

After my birthday this past Tuesday, I am thankfully able to say I have had more time with Jesus than I have had without Him.

Grace And Peace To You All,
Alan Perry
Missions Pastor