Everlasting Love

A lifechanging moment. It is something so precious, so sacred - at least, if it is a good one. One lifechanging, eye-opening experience I encountered was when I was at a local cafe. There was an event going on that my dad emceed. It was called PURECHOICE, and it was about being pure - spiritually, physically, and mentally. A few people shared their testimonies. Then Ben Courson came up (he's Jon Courson's son). He talked, told stories, that kind of thing - like a regular speaker, you know? But something amazing happened that day, in that cafe, surrounded by lots of teens. I saw people who were struggling, people who knew that they needed Jesus and wanted Him in their life. Near the end of Ben's talk, he presented the opportunity for anyone to stand if they wanted to accept Christ as their Savior or recommit their life to Him. "Make a stand for Christ," he said. I knew that hearts were beating. I knew that people were thinking about it, that some people knew that they needed Christ or that they needed to recommit to Him. Then it happened. One person stood...then another...then another. Some of the people, I knew. Some, I did not. But I was truly touched by what I saw. A "hyper" and "kinda-crazy" boy from the youth group I used to attend stood up, his eyes red and looked like he was going to cry. That was a life-changing moment for me. Seeing all those people, getting a reminder that God's love is for-real and that we can grasp and have it...it was great.

Maybe you're in the same position as some of those people. Maybe you have asked God into your life, but have not been spending time with Him, following Him, living for Him, acknowledging Him in your everyday life. Or maybe you don't know God. Maybe you think, I'm good - I go to church, so I'll go to heaven. Maybe no one has ever told you about God. Maybe you believe that you are saved because you "prayed the prayer," "said the words," "did enough." Maybe you think you are saved because someone you know is, or because you go to a Christian school. Maybe you know deep-down that you really need God, you need His love and His light and His care and His understanding and His salvation and amazing grace. You need it. I need it. We all desperately need it. 

Jeremiah 33:3 says this: "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know."

God is waiting for you to call to Him. Maybe you think that there can't be a God, since so much bad stuff has happened to you or to people you know. Maybe you feel too bad for God, like He could never love a person like You. Or maybe you feel too GOOD for Him.

Wherever you are in your faith life right now, please know this...God loves you. I know you may have heard it in the stories at Sunday School, or the songs you've always heard, or from the people you've grown up with. Maybe you don't believe it. But please, please believe it.

The end of Jeremiah 31:3 says: "“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness." And Romans 8:38-39 talks about God's love for us..."For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Isaiah 54:10 says: "'Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,' says the LORD, who has compassion on you." We see it over and over again in God's Word. He LOVES us. He wants a relationship with us. He wants us to run to Him, because His arms are always open for us. God wants you to talk to Him, and He's trying to talk to you, trying to tell you how much He loves you and understands everything You're going through. God went through hard times too - VERY hard times. He was betrayed by his friends, beaten, hung on a cross to take the penalty for OUR sins...all so that we can be with Him in heaven. If He didn't do that, we couldn't be with Him at all. He so desperately wants that relationship with you, dear, precious, special girl. No matter where you are, no matter what you've done, no matter who you are or who you've been, God loves you. He really does.

But how can we have a relationship with God? John 3:16-17 sums it up well: "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him."
See the end of the first verse (vs. 16). It says: "Whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." Without Christ in our life, we will be separated from God forever in a terrible place called hell. But with Christ, we can have eternal life with Jesus in heaven. And that's awesome. All you have to do to spend eternity with Jesus is confess that you are a sinner (that you do bad things) and that you need Jesus to save you, and ask Jesus to cleanse you, make you new, and live inside you. You don't have to say fancy words or make the prayer long. It's just you talking to Jesus. If you truly mean these words with all your heart, God will forgive you. He loves you, dear one. And if you need to recommit your life to Jesus, you can tell Him that you want to come back to Him, to run to His arms. He is the most trustworthy, good, forgiving, loving Father you could ever have. He will never leave you, and He will never forsake you. Even though times will be and are hard, God will be with you, waiting for you, showing you His perfect plan, loving you.

Jeremiah 29:11-13
 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."

Anonymous –   – (March 31, 2011 at 2:55 PM)  

I really loved your post, Talia:) It has once again inspired me more than you can imagine! God bless!!!:D

Hannah :)  – (March 31, 2011 at 3:51 PM)  

Talia you never cease to amaze me. :) and i know what you mean by a life changing experience. :) i myself had one last Sunday. I was at church and our entire church (young and old) went into the youth group's gym to have a passover. But it was diff.. We were a FAMILY OF CHRIST. Our pastor had us sit with people we didn't know. And i met some really nice people. Then we ate. It was delicious. Long story short, he had us sing, pray and...my favorite part...our whole church...about 200 people....held hands in a large circle around the big room. And we ALL sang Amazing Grace. It felt like magic. Before i knew it, my eyes had really opened for the first time. There were teens who had the same troubles i was facing. Adults who were hurt. Children scared to face the world. But there was also teens who loved to laugh and loved the Lord. Adults smiling at the people around them and thinking there wise thoughts. Children laughing and playing. I looked around at them all. And i just...
saw. It was just amazing. And somehow...it changed my life. although i can't describe it. Does anyone know what i mean?
(sorry this is soooooo long. But i just needed to say it.) and i need to say this...

Brydon  – (March 31, 2011 at 5:20 PM)  

I like how he asked people to STAND UP. I think that pastors let too many people "sneak in" to Heaven. They secretly devote thier lives to God so that they won't feel "embarassed", but giving your life to Christ is one of the most Honorable, Courageous things we can do as Christians!! You are a passionate writer Talia!

Talia  – (March 31, 2011 at 8:39 PM)  

Hannah :), Lexi, and Brydon...thank you so much! Hannah, I love your story. Just imagining it is really neat. God is AMAZING, isn't He? Brydon, I thought it was cool how they stood up too. Although I believe that you CAN be a Christian who isn't, like, super social, you know? I don't think there's such a thing as "Sneaking into heaven," though, you know? God knows the people whose hearts are turned to him. ♥

Sarah  – (April 1, 2011 at 1:47 PM)  

Brydon, I agree. At the Reb conference, they had to stand up and walk to the front! It was amazing!

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Girlz of God Copyright Talia DeAndrea 2010, 2011, 2012. "Genuine," "Girlz of God," and "Tania's Faith" book excerpts Copyright Talia DeAndrea 2010, 2011, 2012. All pictures Copyright Talia DeAndrea, unless otherwise noted. Please do not steal or copy anything on this blog without my permission. Thank you :-).

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