I was brought up in a Congregational church (now United Reformed) and although I believed in God I had no knowledge of Jesus as a living saviour. I was very surprised when one day the Minister asked those who were saved in the congregation to put up their hands. When a few of the ‘loud’ types put their hands up I wondered how they could possibly know and in any event what did ‘saved’ mean? A few years later when I was at college other students witnessed to me and I was stunned when I was told by one of them that I was ‘certainly on the road to hell’. I couldn’t understand what I had done. I had been a Sunday school teacher and I had been part of the Christian Union at school since I was 9. Later however I did hand my life over to Jesus, but continued to walk with one foot in the world because I thought Christians were ‘boring’.
After a number of years and through a series of events, I found myself at ‘The Hyde’, which was a Christian community run by Colin Urquhart. I experienced an overwhelming sense of God’s presence while visiting the Hyde and found myself broken and in tears, but I did not understanding why. I was given the opportunity to speak to a very mature and knowledgeable Christian lady called Ginny. She spent hours with me, answering my questions and explaining the Christian faith. I still resisted, but I just didn’t want to surrender ‘me’. One day while walking in the extensive grounds of the Hyde I became hopelessly lost. I was supposed to be meeting with Ginny at the house within half an hour. No matter how hard I tried I could not seem to find my way back. As I stumbled along, panicking, I clearly heard God say, ‘If you don’t follow me you will spend the rest of your life like this, lost and unable to find the way’. I was stunned and asked God to get me back to the house and miraculously, somehow I instantly found my way back which seemed to be obvious and easy!
As I get older I realise how serious our decisions are. When we pass from this earth we will face God alone; Job 1:21 ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return’, there will be no one to hold our hand. In ‘The Great Divorce’ C.S. Lewis shows us how hard it is to escape from our entrenched attitudes. If we are jealous, without God, we become the epitome of jealousy and so it is with money, relationships etc. Whatever we worship we become, because it controls us. When we put our hand to the plough we must not turn back – if we do, we may be lost forever. I want to be the one C.S. Lewis talks about when he says; ‘A thousand fail to solve the problem, ten thousand choose the wrong turning: but she passes safely through.’
Lord, help us to be those who ‘Pass safely through’, Amen.
Author: Gill Watson
May God bless and enrich your life
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