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I saw this posted on Facebook today and simply had to share.  Please share this with others too.  So many people think that because they prayed a little prayer as a child (or even as an adult) that they are “saved” and Heaven bound, regardless of how they live.  After all, we’re all saved by Grace, right?  It’s not about our “works”, right?  Jesus did it all, didn’t He?  Therefore, don’t JUDGE!  Cause, well… that’s wrong ya know.    We’ve all heard it.

Listen folks, the Bible is clear about this and everyone should take it very seriously.  1st John 3:7-10 states clearly : Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray.  The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.  The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning.  The reason the Son of God appeared  was to destroy the devil’s work.  No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.  This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are; Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.  

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Quotes 089

WHY JESUS DOESN’T WANT YOU TO “ASK HIM INTO YOUR HEART”

I’ll never forget it. I was in middle school. All around me were other middle school kids crying. Hardly anyone was standing. It was a powerful moment—so much so that even now when I think about it a range of emotions come over me. Where was I? I was at a youth camp. It was the last night where everyone “asked Jesus into their heart.” Mercy Me’s “I Can Only Imagine” was playing while the camp speaker asked all the kids to bow their heads and close their eyes. He would then say, “ok whoever wants to receive Jesus repeat after me….”

Sound familiar?

Have you ever asked Jesus into your heart?

Now first let me say this—I am not arguing in this blog that Jesus doesn’t save through this method (because He clearly does). Also, John 1:12 would suggest we do need to receive Jesus in some way or another. But my question is why has it become so mechanical? So forced? So calculated? Receiving the grace of Jesus is a beautiful thing. We tell people it is free (which it is), but we forget to tell them it will cost them their life (which it will). I’m humbly submitting that this might be the main thing contributing to our lethargic, apathetic, and consumer based Christianity that’s plaguing our nation right now.

Doesn’t it haunt you that this “prayer” is never uttered in the New Testament?

Have you ever asked yourself why?

Doesn’t it haunt you that people never made a “decision” but rather gave up all they had to follow Jesus?

Why is the life we are calling people to, so different from what the original disciples called them to?

When I first became a Christian about 4 years ago, the church I went to would give an “invitation” at the end of every sermon. It was very similar to the experience above. He would have people bow their heads and close their eyes, and “accept Jesus into their heart.” He would then usually say something like “I see your hand, God sees your heart.” I think about 15 people would get saved every service. At this time they were probably a 3,000+ person church with multiple campuses in a tiny town. I remember thinking after about a year, that if 15 people were getting “saved” a service in a town of around 20,000 this city should be upside down for Jesus. But Monday through Saturday nothing seemed much different. Why? Also why do they bow their heads and close their eyes? I struggled with the fact that if someone can’t proclaim Jesus is Lord and that their heart has been changed by His grace in the safest of all places—a church full of people who already love Jesus!—then do we really think they would proclaim Him boldly out in the world, where He’s hated?

Let me clarify though before my email inbox fills up with not so happy Christians defending this method. I don’t care how you preach the gospel, as long as its the gospel that’s actually being preached. Is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus the focus? Is there blood? Is there cross? Is there persecution? 2nd Timothy 3:12 says all who seek to follow Jesus will face persecution. Too many times we proclaim “your best life now”, instead of a rugged cross. If they are being called to more than a stirred heart, but called to an abandoned life, then by all means do it. But, people aren’t being called to die for the sake of God’s glory and His mission, then I’d be careful to call it the true message of Jesus.

Jesus isn’t after people “accepting Him into their hearts” He is after people boldly giving up all they have and following Him by faith, death, and suffering.

Nothing makes me tremble more at night then knowing there are millions of people (most likely in churches) who don’t know Jesus at all, and are being led to hell under the pretense that they are “good to go” because they prayed a prayer. In fact the main reason they stay distant from Jesus is that they think they’ve already “taken care of that.” The truth is, if a boulder dropped on top of you, you’d look different after the fact. Why is it then that supposedly when the most glorious, holy, amazing, and beautiful infinite God of the universe “drops” on us we don’t look any different? You are saved by grace, but real grace changes you.
Is that you? Do you actually know Him?

I’m not asking do you struggle or wrestle (you should) but I’m asking do you know Him? Do you love Him? Do you want more of Him? Even if you are struggling, if you can answer yes to those questions, you are in a safe place. But, if you are simply clinging to something you did years ago, but you have zero intimacy with your Creator, I’d tread softly.

From now on what do you say we….

Stop asking Jesus into our heart, and start asking Jesus to change our heart.

Stop receiving Jesus, and start following Jesus

Stop raising our hand for Jesus, and start raising our obedience for Jesus.

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self?”
Luke 9:24-25

Link to the original post below:

http://jeffbethke.com/why-jesus-doesnt-want-you-to-ask-him-into-your-heart/

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Ran across a post on Facebook this morning that really grabbed my attention.  I’ve seen it, or those like it, many times, but this morning it just struck me as so sad.  I know it was meant to be “funny”, but often times it’s more true than we realize, and when you sit and give it some consideration… it should be very un-funny to Christ Followers.

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The ONLY one that our attitude should depend on is Jesus Christ.   Think of the power that’s handed over to people if we allow them to control our attitude!   I don’t know about you, but I feel that my attitude is more important than that and should never be handed over to just anyone.   Jesus, my Savior, should be ruler over my attitude.   I pray that the next time someone upsets me, hurts my feelings, makes me angry, annoyed, or whatever else, that my attitude stays under the control of the One I follow – my Savior, my Lord and Master, Jesus Christ.

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If you’ve read any on my blog, or even more so if you’re a friend of mine on Facebook or Twitter, then you know how touched I’ve been by Kimberly L. Smith’s book, “Passport Through Darkness.”   Her book has started to literally change my life.  It’s changing the way I look at everything in life, including the simple things like having running clean water. I’ve always taken running clean water for granted.  It’s been there since birth and I can’t imagine not having something so seemingly simple. But there are those that do not have running water, that do not have clean water, that have to walk miles to get even dirty water.

Because of it’s impact to those who read this book, I want to see as many as possible read it.  God is using Kimberly L. Smith to open eyes to see needs that are there.  Jesus very clearly tells us in Matthew 22: 37-40 that we are to love God with all our heart, all our soul, and all our mind and that equally important is to love our neighbors as ourselves.  We read that in our Bibles, most people know those verses well, but what does it look like in a practical way? Kimberly gives us perfect examples in “Passport Through Darkness” of exactly what that can look like.

So here’s the deal –  Kimberly and her organization Make Way Partners will give away a copy of her incredible book to the person that shares this blog post, and/ or my blog in general,  the most (the particulars of how this will work will be at the end of this post).  You can keep the book you win or you can give it to someone else and change their life, either way you will be helping to make a difference for the Lord.  Listen… The more we share this information, this incredible story of love, the more people will be made aware of the great need that’s out there and the more people will be changed and thereby helped.    I am going to run this contest from the second it’s published until Thanksgiving Day (November 22, 2012).

Contest Rules:  To win you simply need to share, share, and share this post and my blog in general,  everywhere – via email, Facebook, Twitter, word of mouth, and so on… JUST SHARE and when you share, ask each and every person to comment below or to email me at LetsSpeakGently @ gmail . com,  and let me know that you’ve shared it with them.

The person who shares it the most will be the winner and the winner will be announced on my blog on November 22, 2012.  Please come back here to look to see if you’ve won around the time frame of 7:00 pm EST. 

Please, above all else remember – Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. James 1:27   This contest is about sharing a story about what it means to do exactly what this Scripture tells us to do and how doing so not only changes the people being helped, but also how it changes the lives of the helpers.  It’s important – God says so, let’s help others “hear” this story.

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Could I ask a small favor of my new WordPress blogging friends?  In addition to sharing bits and pieces of my life and love for my Savior here on WordPress, I also enjoy sharing a few things on a Facebook “page” that I have.   I’ve had this page for a little while now and for the last few months those “liking” it have numbered 72.  I see this number 72 every time I go over there to share something.  I’m a little tired of seeing the number 72.  Actually, I’m more than a little tired of it!

So, my request is this… could you please, oh please, oh pretty please, share my Facebook Page so that maybe, just maybe, one day soon I can see some number other than the number 72!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart! ♥

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