Almost like it were yesterday I vividly recall a day when I was about eight years old. We were in the living room of our home in Riverside when I asked my mother, "Mom, how do you get to heaven?" Mom said, "Well, if you're good you'll go to heaven." She had not addressed the "and if you're not," but either way her answer did not satisfy. I knew I was good, but I also knew I was bad. Over the ensuing years I pondered God often, always believing He was that someone way over there and I was just this little someone way over here. I struggled to know how to connect.
I remember when mom would scrub the kitchen floor. When finished she'd yell, "Kay, take the scrub water out." Prancing through the yard, I'd "test the waters," circling the bucket up and over my head. Instinctively I knew that the water, never dumping on my head, had something to do with God.
My search to know Jesus followed me until l970 when, after removal of my thyroid, I learned the test results came back cancerous. It was in my adult Sunday school class one day that my teacher, Hilda Cashner, gestured with her hand explaining that Jesus could live in one's heart. In that moment, it clicked! I knew that it was the answer for which I sought all my growing up years. I prayed, asking God for forgiveness of my sins, inviting Jesus into my heart that day and knew, from then on, that I would not go to that awful place where there is only darkness and gnashing of teeth. Worse, that it was for all eternity. That day I chose everlasting life in heaven with Jesus.
Having worked on my family tree last year, I am eager to meet those ancestors for which I had discovered documents testifying to their own personal decision to receive Christ. But most of all I am eager to meet the One who died on the cross for my sins that I might receive forgiveness and everlasting life. Our Bible tells us that "Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life." 1 John 5:12.
The birth of our Lord is our reminder that He came to give us everlasting life. If you have never made this life-changing decision to receive Christ, not just with your head which does nothing, but with your heart. I pray that even as you read, that today will be your day of salvation. It's the most important decision you will ever make in your life.
May you have a joyous and a very Merry Christmas,