"AND NOW THE REST OF THE STORY..." (Paul Harvey-esq)

If you know Paul Harvey’s famous line – “And now the rest of the story” then you know how I felt this morning when the Holy Spirit said these words to me.  I humbly said in response, “Alright, Holy Spirit, lead me into all truth.” – and He did.

At small group, growth group, bible study – whatever you desire to call it – last night, there was a discussion that led me to comment about the supposed beginning of a Christian Believer’s eternal relationship with God.  I said, “You know I think many Christians get saved and then for whatever reason (teaching, encouragement, etc…) they have the mentality that their eternal relationship does not start until we are raptured or death takes us and we are with God in Paradise or Heaven.  So, with this kind of mentality they lose out on all the benefits of a relationship with God while on the earth from the time of being born again to when the believer goes home.”

So, as I was getting ready this morning (God likes to meet me in the shower for some reason), the Holy Spirit said, “You know what you said last night had truth in it…….’And now the rest of the story.’”  The Holy Spirit continued, “Eternity does NOT start at the salvation of your soul, eternity begins at the birth of a soul or being into this world.  The soul or being is born fallen, damned – prone to rebel and/or disobey the ways of God and all having the same eternal destination because of this sinful state – eternal separation from God (hell, lake of fire, abyss). (Romans 3:10, 22-23)  BUT that destination can change IF the unbeliever chooses or accepts the only God that has ever given a free gift of salvation that cost Him everything, His only Son – Jesus.” (John 3:16; Romans 10:9

I said, “I understand Holy Spirit.  Thank you Father God for Loving me that much to begin with, for your Love keeps on Loving and I have experienced that in my own life.  Jesus, thank you for following through with Father God’s plan for your life and my life!  Without your sacrificial life and resurrection I would not have the option to spend eternity with you or Father God.  Holy Spirit, thank you for revealing these truths to my heart.  Help me to keep them close and ponder on them regularly in order to maintain a fresh perspective of my salvation and the salvation of the world.”

With this writing I encourage any unbelievers who may be reading this to please consider Jesus as your Spiritual Foundation and not anything else.  Father God is the only one that paid the ultimate price to secure an everlasting, restored, redeemed and glorious relationship with Him through Jesus.  Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)  So, pray and/or speak to Him today about where you are in your life.  Lay your life down; surrender your life to Him.  Confess your need for Him and your belief in His Provision.  Then let me or someone know of your awesome life-changing decision!

For Believers – Don’t miss this opportunity to develop your personal relationship with God.  “Pray in the spirit on all occasion with all kinds of prayers and requests.” (Ephesians 6:18)  The Holy Spirit is dwelling within you at all times.  He is accessible anytime.  He is our best friend and God.  Speak to the Holy Spirit regularly.  If you get to the point when you are talking to the Holy Spirit on “all occasions” then you are on your way to a beautiful relationship.  Remember my Hotel and/or House experience I wrote about? (If not, read it, please.)  Don’t treat your body like a Hotel for the Holy Spirit – only summoning Him when you think you need Him.  That is not the way to treat the Holy Spirit or your body.  Treat your body like the Temple or House of God that it is suppose to be – a dwelling place, living quarters for The Spirit of God, the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead (Romans 8:11).  A clean body, inside and out, makes for great preparation when you go to meet and/ or speak with God privately in your personal “quiet-times”.  
I encourage me as well as you to speak to God more often about anything and everything - share your life with Him, because He desires to share His abundant life with you!
Here is a song for us to sing to Him…

I am weak, but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I’ll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Through this world of toil and snares,
If I falter, Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares?
None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

Here is another “oldie but Goldie” for the topic at hand…

I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.

And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

He speaks, and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing.

I’d stay in the garden with Him,
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling.