As I wander along the shores of the Gulf at sunset reflecting on my journey pursuing my faith in God and Jesus' teachings, I begin to become awakened to a realization that we are all sinners ( especially good self professed Christians). It is only by the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross for our sins that we all can be saved in His name. This means all of us no matter what your walk in life is. Avid church goer, sinner, drug addict, thief, criminal, or just an all around good person with no ties to a church can be saved and follow Christ.
The only requirement is if you believe there is a God and a Jesus then you can be saved no matter what you have done in your past or present. God so loved His creations that He sacrificed His only son for our sins. And God still loves you today whether you go to a church or not. All He ask is for you to believe and accept Him into your life so that He can guide and comfort you. No established church attendance is required. Only have faith in Him. When two or more is gathered in worship no matter where, that is a church or body of Christ.
I recently met a man that had tattoos all over his arms and a beard. A rather rough looking fellow but was kind hearted. He asked about a book I was reading ( surprised by the Holy Spirit). I told him I was a Christ follower and believed in God. He asked if I went to Church and I said I did not any more as I had a falling out with the established church model I had attended. I stated I was more of a maverick when it came to my faith. I just didn't follow a set of rules or denomination guidelines.
He stated that he felt he was touched by God and started going to a church and even asked to be baptised. The pastor or deacon of that church laughed and stated that he would not fit in with that church so he quit going but felt he had to go to church to be saved. I told him he did not need to go to church to be saved but to open up his sins to God and pray for forgiveness as well as accept Jesus as his saviour. I reminded him of Jesus' disciples and their backgrounds and they were also touched by the Holy Spirit through Jesus and went on to do many miracles as leaders of the early church.
We continued to meet frequently and discuss the faith. He did state that he watched some Christian programs on TV fearing being rejected going back to a brick and mortar church. He told me about watching a healing conference on You Tube where a young baby was brought back to life by a pastor on the program after Doctors gave up all hope. As he told the story to me it brought tears to his eyes but joy over what he had witnessed. I asked him if he wanted to pray with me to worship God for saving this child and open his heart to God. He was reluctant but I assured him God will lovingly welcome him into His arms.
As we prayed some thing came over the both of us. I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit and the hair stood up on the back of my head. He immediately started to speak in tongues and jump up and down praising God. Tears from the both of us flowed like a raging river. This went on for a few minutes. After wards, He stated he felt the burdens lifted off his shoulders and that he felt he was in the presence of God. I said: "Chester ( not his real name) you were blessed by the grace of God. What you have experienced was God touching your heart. You were in the presence of the body of Christ (a church)".
Since then we have had more talks and prayers. Now he wants to bring his wife and friends for our round house talks and prayers. It really doesn't matter where you are you can experience the virtues of being in a church as long as two or more gather to worship and praise God. It doesn't have to be an established church or building. It just have to be a place where two or more gather to hear God's words. Even a beach with cascading surf can suffice. Any one can also be saved no matter what or who you are. Just believe in faith.
Although this maverick swore off blogging, I just had to tell this story about a chance meeting. It seems that if your heart is with God, He always leads you into a position where He can use you to lead others to Him such as the case with Chester.