There is a big difference between Christianity and all the other religions of the world. In Christianity God wants us to give Him our hearts. God wants us to love Him and to obey Him. God wants us to open our hearts and to invite Him into our lives. God wants us to love Him with everything we have and with everything we are. He wants us to put Him first and above anything else we would desire. And in Christianity, to become a Christian, you need to ask God to come into your heart and be willing to live and to die for Him.

Open your heart to the Lord and ask Him into your life

It reads in Isaiah 55:1-4,

““Is anyone thirsty?
Come and drink—
even if you have no money!
Come, take your choice of wine or milk—
it’s all free!
Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength?
Why pay for food that does you no good?
Listen to me, and you will eat what is good.
You will enjoy the finest food.
“Come to me with your ears wide open.
Listen, and you will find life.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you.”

God wants to come to Him with our hearts and our minds and to ask Him into our lives. We are to invite God into our hearts. That means we are to pray to Him and say to Him that we love Him and we want Him to be in our lives. Praying to God means speaking to Him. We can speak to God in our hearts or we can speak to God out loud.

Speaking to God out loud means talking to Him. But really when we are talking to God we are praying. We are praising Him and thanking Him for who He is and for what He has done for us. When we are praying to God we are talking with Him. He is listening to our words and to our hearts. And God will answer us because He cares and loves us.

We can choose to obey God

The Bible teaches us that to follow God means to choose in our hearts to obey Him. To obey God means that we want to follow His teachings. And we can follow His teachings by learning what it says in the Bible and also to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit that God has placed in our hearts and in our lives.

God teaches us in the Bible that to follow Him is a choice. We are the ones who have been given the power and authority to rule over this earth and even to rule over whether or not we want to choose to follow God or not.

The Bible teaches us: “So fear the Lord and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord alone. But if you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:14-15).

God wants people to choose today who it is they want to follow. Do they want to follow God or do they want to follow the world?

In Isaiah 56:4 we choose to obey God. This what it says:

“who choose to do what pleases me
and commit their lives to me.
I will give them—within the walls of my house—
a memorial and a name
far greater than sons and daughters could give.
For the name I give them is an everlasting one.
It will never disappear!

People choose to follow Jesus

In the Bible we read about many people who chose to follow Jesus even though their families and the religious people around them told them not to. Many times we read in the Bible that the people who chose to follow Jesus were healed and filled with joy and peace. Some people were forgiven of their sins and filled with a lot of joy and peace because they knew and felt that their sins were forgiven.

However, many of these people who chose to follow Jesus had to pay a price to do so. The people who chose to follow Jesus had to give up their families because their families did not love them anymore. Many people who chose to follow Jesus had to suffer. They had their families and children taken away from them. They were thrown out of the houses they lived in. Many were hunted down like wild animals and thrown in prison. Others were tortured. And some were even put to death.

All these things happened because they chose to follow Jesus. But in return Jesus gave them peace for their souls. Jesus forgave them of their sins and gave them eternal life. Those people who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour have had their sins forgiven. They have been washed in the blood of the lamb. They are clean and forgiven. They are now friends with God.

So in order to gain eternal life and to live with God in heaven forever, and to have peace and joy on this earth, you may have to suffer for Jesus.

When you become a Christian you are filled with joy and peace because your sins have been forgiven and it is our sins that separated us from God. When we accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour then God washed away the guilt of our sins and gave us a friendship with Him.

Our sins were removed. The punishment for our sins was removed. We were made right with God. A heavy weight was lifted. We felt great and still do.

That is why the Bible says: “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:1).

© Somali Christian Ministries, 2014
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