For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. (2Ti 1:12)
I had a BBQ sandwich for lunch – sliced ham slathered in sauce, French fries, green beans, and hush puppies with a bowl of homemade pickles. I sat at an over-varnished picnic table in a down-home local restaurant between “good ol’ boys” on their lunch break and enjoyed every bite.
No one anywhere can tell me I wasn’t there and didn’t eat it. For one thing, I have the receipt. For another, there are witnesses who’d remember seeing me at the table in the corner. My daughter, who sat across from me. The waitress who will recall taking my order. The girl at the register who’ll say I paid for the meal.
It’s equally ridiculous for anyone to say God doesn’t exist, and Jesus didn’t die on the cross. I’ve experienced both. God is real to me. Jesus lives in my heart. Those are absolutes.
You can’t tell me God doesn’t save anymore. He saved me.
You can’t tell me God doesn’t heal anymore. He healed me.
You can’t tell me God doesn’t rescue or deliver. He delivered me from paralyzing fear.
You can’t tell me God doesn’t prosper and provide for physical needs. He’s provided for mine many times.
You can’t convince me there’s any “good” to walking in the darkness when I’ve already experienced the light.
No man can undo how I’ve lived. I did get married in 1989. I did have a daughter in 1993. I buried one of my beloved grandmothers in 2008. I published my first book in 2011.
And yesterday, I had BBQ. It’s a fact. A done deal.
So is the work of Christ in my heart. Oh, I mess up frequently. I’m short-tempered and impatient with others. I must repent daily and lean on God’s mercies. But there isn’t a doubt in my mind where I stand in Christ. (Php 3:9)
My mother used to tell me, whenever I’d come home from school complaining about something this friend or that friend said, she’d say, “But they’re wrong.” That has solved more things in my life over the years.
Because the fact is, if you try to tell me God’s a myth, you’re wrong. If you try to say He doesn’t love everyone, you’re wrong. If you try to say my prayers aren’t heard and I shouldn’t expect an answer, you’re wrong. These are things I’ve already proven.
No government, political party, misled celebrity, confused Christian, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature can separate me from the love of God, in Christ, my Savior. (Rm 8:38-39)
I’ve sat at the table. I’ve eaten the meal. I HAVE THE RECEIPT. Written in the blood of Christ, paid for when He hung on the cross, sealed when He rose from the dead. I have witnesses, a cloud of them in heavenly places.
And here’s the best part – if you can’t say that, God is standing here with an outstretched hand waiting to do the same for you! Anyone who comes to Him, He won’t cast out. (Jn 6:37)
I’ll take it even further. You don’t think you need Him. You’ve lived your life minus God this far. Perhaps, you’re the person trying to convince me to give up, to turn loose, to let go, to realize how wrong I am. I’m wrong frequently and have to admit it. I’m a work in progress, learning every day to be a better person than I was the day before, but in this – in God’s salvation – I’m not wrong at all.
I’ve already been there, hand-in-hand with Christ when He raised me from the lowest place. It wasn’t a freak accident. He didn’t do it for me because in my delusion I needed something to worship. He did it because He’s alive. He did it because He’s willing and able. He’s infinite unfathomable love.
All God, all powerful, all day. You can count on it.
Suzanne D. Williams