My childhood was pretty normal. I went to Sunday School and learned Bible stories. I always figured that right before I died, I’d ask for forgiveness and go to heaven!
I thought the point of life was to have a good time. So, I quit school after 10th grade, left home, and partied. I ended up getting arrested on a small drug charge and spent 30 days in jail. I was sober for the first time in years and realized that all my wild living had not fulfilled the emptiness in my life.
I remembered that a couple of years earlier, I worked for a foreman named Marv. He would always tell me about a God who loves me and cared about what happened in my life, and this God was active in his life! He told me many stories of how God was leading him through life and that life was an adventure with Jesus!
Sitting in jail, I knew that I was wrecking my life and needed the help of God to straighten it out. I called Marv and he offered to come down and pray with me. As he prayed with me, holding my hands through the bars of my jail cell, I knew life was never going to be the same. I asked Jesus to be my Lord and promised to follow His lead in my life.
This was the beginning of a whole new adventure! I never knew that there was such joy and love. I realized that there was an emptiness in my life that only God could fill because He is our Creator — He made us to long for a relationship with Him.
I’m so grateful to God! He has been so good to me and my family. We want to help more people experience joy, hope, and freedom, and to bring as many people with us to heaven as we can.
Here’s how Marv shared the Gospel with Randy in his jail cell:
The Bible tells us that God has a design for every single area of our lives. He cares about every aspect of our lives! The Bible says that if we’ll operate our lives according to God’s design, we’ll live in God’s blessing.
When we do things our own way (as he pointed at Randy’s jail cell), we depart from God’s design and experience “brokenness.” The kind of change we need doesn’t come from the world, but from the gospel. God will help to change our mind, change our heart, and change our direction.
When we turn from our sins and believe the gospel story – the story of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus – then Jesus comes into our lives. He forgives our sins and He begins to heal the broken places in our lives. Because Jesus does that, we have the opportunity to recover and pursue God’s design for our lives.
Marv then explained that when God comes into our life, He sends us back out into a broken world as ambassadors for His kingdom. We can love others and help them learn about how Jesus can heal them, also.
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