***The Iowa Standard is an independent media voice. We rely on grassroots financial supporters to exist. If you appreciate what we do, please consider a one-time sign of support or becoming a monthly supporter (even just $5/month would go a long way in sustaining us!) We also offer advertising options for advocacy groups, events and businesses! If you’ve ever used the phrase “Fake News Media” — this is YOUR chance to do something about it! You can also support us on PayPal at [email protected] or Venmo at Iowa-Standard-2018 or through the mail at: PO Box 112 Sioux Center, IA 51250 Thank you so much for your support and please invite your friends and family to like us on Facebook, sign up for our email newsletter and visit our website!***

All the problems of the world could be solved by one thing. Christianity. Christianity is an exclusive club…. that anyone can join. Christianity is not a religion; it is having a personal relationship with God. It was the religious leaders of the day that killed Jesus on the cross. They were expecting the Messiah to be a military leader that would “save” them. Jesus was not what they expected and they were angry that He called Himself the Son of God. They were even angry that He healed the sick and raised the dead.

What they didn’t know was that He came to Earth as a man so that He could be a perfect sacrifice for our imperfections. That is how He saves us. We need to be perfect to be with God the Father for eternity. Not one of us can achieve that by ourselves. He made a Way, by sacrificing Himself for us. What other god does that?

God is the embodiment of love. He created humans for companionship except love cannot exist without choice. He created us and gave us a choice, to follow Him, to love Him or not. When Jesus says to “follow me” what He means is to consciously submit our hearts to be like His. These traits are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. His way leads to eternal life and the Bible does say that not many will find it.

God searches the Earth for those that have a heart inclined towards Him and when He finds you, He will call you. Is your heart burning right now? That is the call of God.  When you hear the call of God you will feel guilty for the things you have done that are against His nature. Lay every single guilt you feel at His feet and tell Him you are sorry. Nothing you do surprises or shocks God. That is repentance. He will forgive us and have mercy on us for every sin- no sin is too big. Then we start to learn to walk perfectly like Jesus. This is the beginning of spiritual life; it is what the Bible calls being “born again”.

To learn from Jesus, we read His Words in the Scriptures and we pray. Prayer is just talking to God, often when you are alone. Prayer does not need to be long or grand. We thank Him, bring all our worries to Him and we begin to hear His voice. He leads us. The Gospel is simple enough for a child to understand. There is no need for it to be complex though man loves to make it so. As our relationship with Jesus deepens we will understand more. The Scriptures ARE alive and they are the very Words of God.  A scripture that had no meaning can change to have meaning as He changes your heart.

He will care for us because He loves us. We need to obey Him and trust Him like a child should be able to trust and obey a parent because we do not understand things the way He does. This is faith. Faith that He loves us and that he is good. In His Word He tells us that in this life we will have trials and there will be storms. These are for the perfecting of our faith. We are told not to fear no matter how things look because He is there. Fear is not a feeling; it is a spirit and we must deny that spirit.

Not everyone that calls themselves a Christian is one. Some people are confused by what it means. Some are stuck in religion; some are trying to justify themselves. I have been there. I have learned to circle back to the basics of repentance, prayer and relying on His Word, His entire Word, whenever I find myself off the path, bogged down in pride, fear or unbelief.

This world is a mess. It is a spiritual mess because so many people have chosen their own way over God’s Way. They seek their own truth instead of God’s Truth.

This world is temporary. We will only be here a relatively short time in all of eternity. That is why we are told not to love the world, the things of the world or even our own lives.

At the end of this world there is coming a time of judgment. All will be judged for every word we speak and everything we do while in these bodies. Now is the time of God’s mercy but we must choose it. The Bible says every knee WILL bow and every tongue WILL confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. The only people who will escape eternal punishment are those who choose to follow Jesus, those whose sins have been covered by His sacrificial blood. Following Jesus is the only Way to God. Run your race well.

Author: Janna Swanson