I met Jesus in the bathroom of a convenience store in Fairbanks Alaska in the fall of 1987. I had heard the gospel previous to this time but had not personally connected with Jesus. His presence in that bathroom was very real! Nobody else was there, just me and Jesus. It was an intimate and life-giving experience!
For the first year or so after that I was simply high on Jesus and life just worked as I trusted, fell in love with, and followed him! I was bold in my witness and sharing Jesus was just natural.
Then I became involved in the charismatic church. Don’t get me wrong, it was a good time in my life as I met some wonderful people. But the church as a whole today, especially the church in America has become more about being part of an organization and serving in the church than it is about having a love affair with Jesus and knowing him intimately. I am thankful for that time in my life and the different churches that I served in. I became a “student of the Bible” and worked in children’s ministry. But after 15 years of serving in the church and doing good works I was cold, empty, and burned out.
Sometime during the year of 2003, I was exposed to Impact Ministries and began listening to the teachings of Dr. Jim Richards. Dr. Jim is not about connecting you to a church and getting you involved in ministry but connecting you to Jesus in a very real way and Getting you to fall in love with God!
Since that time I have been on an incredible journey reconnecting to my first love!
So much of what organized religion today teaches us is based on circumstance theology and the traditions of men and not upon who God says he is and who Jesus showed us God is. It is teaching that puts us in bondage and leaves us powerless instead of empowering and setting us free.
It’s really very simple. Knowing and experiencing a Loving heavenly Father on an intimate level will radically change you. These many years later I am finally getting back to the place where I started in that convenience store bathroom so long ago! Just loving God and loving life. The Bible says when we truly see God as he is we will be like him. Sadly the church and religion has not given us a true picture of who God really is.
We were created and the likeness and image of God. We are his children. We don’t have to do anything to earn his love, he has freely given us all things in Jesus! Doing right does not earn anything from God but being right by knowing and experiencing God empowers us to live an amazing, fruitful life!!