I am a Christian.
I didn't buy that status, nor did I work for it. I was not born into it, even though both my parents are devoted Christians.
I am a Christian because there was a moment in my life when I accepted the fact that the death of Jesus Christ was for my sins.
Had I committed murder? No. Had I robbed a bank? No. Was I a big sinner? Maybe you wouldn't think so, but compared to God, Who is holy, I was an infinitely horrible sinner. I was a sinner in need of someone to save me from my sins.
I am the eldest of four, and as our parents raised us in a little town on scenic Vancouver Island, they endeavored to teach us the Bible. We memorized it, quoted it, and even sang it! From my childhood I heard the stories about Jesus and how He is the Son of God. I was fascinated by His power over nature and His love for people who were sick. Jesus even raised people from the dead! I was convinced that He is God.
Even though I learned so much Scripture, I still wasn't a Christian. I had never accepted the fact that I was a sinner, and that Christ had died for my sins.
This all changed on March 15th, 1979. All that week I had been listening to a man speak about what Jesus Christ had done for all those who trust in Him. I can't honestly say I understood everything he was talking about, but one thing began to bother me: I was a sinner. I knew I was not good enough for God.
I struggled with this problem. Really struggled. How could I be acceptable to a God who is absolutely holy?
I realized that I could do nothing to change my sinful condition. Jesus was the only One who could make me right with God. He had suffered and died for my sins. He was the Substitute that God punished instead of me. At that moment, I became a Christian. I was saved from my sins because God says 'he that believes on the Son, has everlasting life'. (John 3:36)
It was that simple. By putting my trust in Jesus Christ to take away all my sins, I was made acceptable to God. Now I have the privilege of telling you the good news: how that you, too, can have your sins forgiven.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved" (Acts 16:31).
While this ends my explanation of how I became a Christian, you might say that it was really just the beginning. The beginning of a relationship with God. I have faults and failures, but my Saviour Jesus Christ is always ready, willing, and able to forgive me. So not only am I assured a place in heaven after I die, but my life is brimming full of meaning. Jesus said, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly". (John 10:10)
I can testify that to have a close relationship with the Son of God is indeed to enjoy 'abundant life'.
My sins are forgiven, and I have peace with God.
Can you say the same?
J. Elton Fairfield