When I was a sophomore in high school, attending church camp, I felt a very real call on my life to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As a teenager I had no idea what this meant, but I knew that God had placed in me a passion and interest in telling others about his Son, Jesus. Shortly after this experience a pastor discouraged me from becoming a pastor, he silenced my shout.
Fast forward to college where I pursued a degree from Indiana Wesleyan University in Christian Worship. I would become a worship pastor and believe I was fulfilling my call to ministry in this. After five years in full time ministry after graduating from college, I began to feel the call to preach again. Looking to my lead pastor for affirmation to pursue seminary and becoming a lead pastor, he informed me that he did not see that call in my life. Again my shout was silenced.
I left full time ministry believing I could reach others for Christ more effectively working secular jobs outside of the church than from working inside the church. I became an electrician, then was hired as a police officer. While at academy my bitterness towards the church began to fade and for the first time in almost two years, I heard from God. He delivered my mission, “Preach the Word, Lead the Church.” I knew I would be heading towards my call again. It took me six more months to give in fully and resign from my position at the police department. I knew more than ever that I was called to shout the Good News!
This is the circumstance that birthed shoutingintothewild.com. I didn’t have a congregation, but I had a message to share. I very quickly began relating to John the Baptist. He was a man with a message, called to live differently to prepare the world for the coming Christ.
“I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord” – John 1:23 (John quoting Isaiah 40:3)
My hope is to indeed prepare a way for the Lord. I am here to give people the Word of God in a way that they can understand and be inspired to live for this coming King. My passion is that no one would perish in Hell, that all would know the saving grace of life in Jesus Christ. The problem is that we are all guilty.
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” – Romans 3:23
Paul quotes the psalms to drive home this idea. Every single one of us is condemned because we all have fallen short of God’s glory, or God’s standard.
“There is no one righteous, not even one. There is no one who understands’ there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away’ all alike have become useless. There is no one who does what is good, not even one. Their throat is an open gravel they deceive with their tongues. Vipers’ venom is under their lips. Their mouth is full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood’ ruin and wretchedness are in their paths, and the path of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes.” – Romans 1:10-18
If we are all wicked and broken, and none of us can escape the brokenness of sinful nature then what hope do we have?
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 6:23
The hope is eternal life in Christ Jesus. The hope of Christ is truly a gift. We had nothing to give to God and yet He proved His love.
“But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!” – Romans 5:8
Christ has done the work for us. We were sinners, with no chance of being saved. We had nothing to offer, and still God came to save us. Christ knew we would be the ones to carry the message of Good News to the rest of the world and He died for us. He died because He loved us. Obtaining the gift of salvation is simple.
“If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” – Romans 10:9
We are promised that we WILL be saved if we confess that Jesus is Lord and that God raised Him from the dead. There are no strings attached and no conditions put on this salvation apart from believing that Jesus is God and He lives forever at the right Hand of the Father. No one who does these things will be denied eternal life.
“For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” – Romans 10:13
As we respond to God’s offer of salvation through Jesus, as we reach out to Him for help to overcome the sin in our lives, He always answers anyone who calls out to Him. No matter how sinful, bad, disgusting, broken, ugly, or vile He will save us if we call out for Him.
“Therefore, since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Romans 5:1
We were once at odds with the creator because of the sin that penetrated our lives. This most Holy God couldn’t even stand the sight of us when we were wrapped in Sin. Now we are made right with God through Jesus sacrifice on the cross, we have peace with God. We can access Him, and He can look on us because His son covered our sin.
“Therefore, no condemnation now exists for those in Christ Jesus.” – Romans 8:1
All there was for us was condemnation. We had a sin debt to pay, and the only way we could pay that was through death and eternal torment in Hell. Jesus pad that debt for us, and suffered in our place as the perfect sacrifice so that those who put their trust in Him for salvation would never see that condemnation.
“For I am persuaded that not even death or life, angles or rulers, things present or things to come, hostile powers, height or depth, or any other created thing will have the power to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord!” – Romans 8:38-39
We have security in Jesus, He will never walk away from us, leave us, turn His back on us, even though we might do that to Him. Jesus is grace, mercy, and love. He wants you to experience this grace, mercy, and love but it starts with acknowledging you are a sinner in need of salvation, then believing in Jesus for that salvation and calling out to Him as your savior so He might call you His own and present you as righteous before God the Father. Don’t delay this surrender, today might be your last chance to reach out to God’s offer of salvation.
If you have any more questions about my story or salvation in Jesus email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time… Keep Shouting…