“There in the ground His body lay, light of the world by darkness slain. Then bursting forth in glorious day, up from the grave He rose again. And as He stands in victory, sins curse has lost its grip on me. For I am His and He is mine, bought with the precious blood of Christ.”
Jesus has risen! He is alive! Praise God for my living King! He bore the cross so that we may have eternal life, so that we can have hope.
This Easter I’m celebrating all that Christ did for me on the cross, the joy that I have because of my salvation. I am also celebrating John’s salvation and his decision to be baptized next Sunday! I can’t imagine a better gift this Easter season. I'm not even sure I can find adequate words to describe the transformation I have seen in John's life.
I have watched God do amazing things in John’s heart over the past few years. When we started dating in 2007, I am sure John thought I was a little loony – a Jesus loving, hand raised during worship girl was a little out of my Catholic raised husband’s comfort zone.
When we began looking for a church that we could attend together, we soon realized just how differently we were raised. I was raised in a southern Baptist church and knew all of the old hymns. John went to Catholic Church and didn’t’ quite grasp what it meant to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. He was used to religion and tradition, not relationship. We visited so many churches and so many times we walked away frustrated, thinking that we would never find a way to meet in the middle. He didn’t want to go to Baptist church and I told him I wasn’t going to become a Catholic.
We finally got plugged into a local church and it didn’t take long for God to start stirring in John’s heart. Several years before John and I met, a friend of John’s had given him a Bible. For the longest time it sat at the top of John’s closet, still in the box. John decided to take it out one day and as soon as he opened it God began to use His word to transform John’s heart. That Bible is now worn and marked up and has become an important piece of John’s faith journey.
As we got more involved in our church, John and I had many in-depth conversations about what it meant to have a personal relationship with Christ. I prayed for John, asking God to stir in his heart and show him what it meant to have a relationship with Him. I wanted my husband to see that it wasn’t about religion but about a relationship. I wanted him to experience the peace and joy that can only come from Jesus. I wanted him to see that God loved him so much – that it wasn’t about following a bunch of rules, but about love.
I very clearly remember the day that John made the decision to ask Jesus into his heart. I know that sounds a little corny when you’re talking about a guy in his late twenties, but it’s really that simple – we just have to ask Jesus into our hearts, to be the Lord or our lives.
Since the day that John made that life-changing decision, I have watched God transform his heart. John has become such an amazing man of God. The man that used to worry himself sick about things now relies on his faith in Christ. The man, who used to be uncomfortable praying, now prays the most sincere, heartfelt prayers.
I have watched my husband share his faith with those who need to experience the love of Jesus. His heart has been heavy for many people and he has had the courage to share what God has done in his life, in hopes that they too will chose a relationship instead of religion.
Last Sunday our preacher taught about the importance of Baptism. John and I have talked about baptism many times before. He was baptized as a baby in the Catholic Church but has felt God tugging at his heart to be baptized again. Being baptized is not salvation, but it’s a chance to show the world that our hearts belong to Jesus. John will be baptized on Sunday, May 1st. When I saw John take out a communication card and write down that he wanted to be baptized, my heart burst with joy and tears poured down my face. I have witnessed God do amazing things in and through my husband.
This morning at church, as we celebrated our risen Savior, I once again had to choke back tears as I watched my husband raise his hands and praise our King! I am blessed beyond words that God has given me John to spend my life with and even more thankful that I will get to spend eternity with him too.