Something that I have learned since I’ve accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior and given Him control over my life is that I do not have to do everything on my own. This is a simple lesson and one that every Christian learns, right? Well, probably, but it’s not always that clear at first as it wasn’t for me. Although I knew Christ to be my Savior, I was a long way from being a finished product.

This is the way it is for each of us as we are never finished but making the decision to give your life to Christ is only the beginning. The journey after this is so much deeper and involves a real commitment. When I first gave my life to Christ, looking back, I am able to see that I was not nearly as prepared as I needed to be. The decision to give your life to Christ is one of the most important decisions a person will ever make but with that said, with real responsibility comes great accountability.

At this period of my life, about twenty years of age, I was young and curious. There was so much life ahead of me, right? Sadly, not for everyone but it’s not about the number of years in your life but rather, the amount of life in your years that counts but for me, I had little to show for my life and while I did not understand everything nor was I nearly prepared as I needed to be, I knew one thing: I wanted to be in the Army of Christ and needed Him more than anyone else. Yes, I am the type of Christianity that claims that I need Christ every minute of every day.

Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things [are] naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.”

—Hebrews 4:13

In other words, none of us can hide from God. Regardless of where we are or what we do, we can never hide from God and Adam and Eve found this out way back in the very beginning of time. Someone once asked me why did God ask Adam “where are you?” if He knows everything. The answer to this question is simple and does not need a long explanation from anyone: God was testing Adam. Parents often allow their kids some leeway if their children are honest with them about what they did and this is one of those times.

There have been moments in my life when I was faced with being honest and accountable with my actions. These situations did not call for me to be honest as I could have lied and gotten out of them but I know that my conscious would not have allowed it. Yes, I may have done some terrible things and there were a few times, when I was younger, when I lied about them but the lie made me feel worse but after accepting Christ, when I did wrong and it came time to face up to the wrongdoings, I had to. It was not necessarily because of what others thought of me but rather, what God thought of me.

“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

—Romans 5:8

This may sound like a copout for many people, even to some Christians, but I have learned that it’s more important about what God thinks of us. This is the way that a Christian is supposed to see the world and wanting God to think good of us will help guide us in the right direction. With that said, of course, none of us will ever be perfect nor should we strive to be perfect but we should do our best. There is not much more that you can ask from a person who does their best regardless of the outcome even if it is not what you had in mind.

A discussion that I had with a family member earlier reminded me that when we do things for man, they are most certainly different with God and the same is true for the outcome. If we do something that is bad for man, they may never forgive us or want us back in their life. There have been times in my life when I was guilty of this. As I have grown and matured in Christ, I have learned that we must let things go because holding on to things for too long, especially the hurt, takes away from living which is why Christ tells us to forgive one another regardless of what they have done.

My point is, God will love us long after we’ve made the mistake but many times, man will not. They hold us accountable for far too long and never let go of it. There are times when forgiveness seems impossible as there are horrendous acts that seem unforgivable and while we are to forgive, this does not mean that we have to let these people back in. There are different people that have done me wrong and truly hurt me and my outlook on different things but as I have learned, you must let it go in order to move on but I was not able to do so until I moved on and matured in Christ.

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Written by Billy Ray Parrish


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