God Has Been Waiting for You!
Growing up among evangelical assemblies in the province of Quebec, reading the Bible was, for me, a very common and normal thing to do. Conversations about the Bible were an ongoing thing around me.
My parents had a plan to read through the whole Bible at least once with us children, on weekday nights, allowing us to discuss it as we went. My father being a pastor, I often heard preaching and I attended many Bible meetings.
From an early age, I knew the Bible better than the average Christian, but that did not make me a Christian. However, God was very real to me, thanks to the numerous testimonies I saw and heard around me, and to the reality of the biblical teachings.
The God of the Bible truly answers prayers. Jesus is real. When facing difficulties, I would pray. Once, around the age of 12, I was delivering newspapers very early in the morning, in January as I recall. It was dark, the wind was bitterly cold, and the snow made the landscape look strange and desert-like, in the half-light of the country side. I remember singing praise songs and reciting Psalm 23 to get the strength needed to finish my newspaper run. God was gradually showing that He cared for me.
At Sunday school, I studied, among other things, the book entitled The Stranger on the Road to Emmaus, where John R. Cross would guide us along all the Scriptures concerning the person and work of God in Jesus Christ. This book showed us how the Bible in its entirety speaks to us and teaches us about Jesus, the Messiah, the Saviour of the world.
Finally, it is due to the fear of death, which haunted my dreams, that I really had to choose between becoming a Christian or not. As the Bible says, I was convicted of sin. My life was not perfect, and this conviction showed me very clearly that I was heading for hell. And so, at a non-denominational youth gathering, when I was about 16 years old, I heard the preacher give a message which I had probably read and heard thousands of times before: the Gospel.
This time, however, I understood that God had died not only for the sins of the world, but also for mine. I realized that God loves me, despite all the sins which I cannot stop committing on my own. I prayed to invite Him into my life and to ask Him to forgive me and help me change.
Knowing what it meant to be a Christian, I died to myself that day. I met Jesus, the real One. I received the Holy Spirit and the assurance of going to heaven when I will die because of what Christ has done. The nightmares ended and, most importantly, I began to love God! I now love to read the Bible every day, sometimes several times in a day; I love to talk about it, I love to pray and praise God, I love the church and my neighbour.
So, will you be reading the story of Jesus in order to find out this mystery now revealed, a new life, the Christian life? God has been waiting for you!
Benjamin, Quebec City