THERE ARE ARTISTS I HAVE HAD THE PLEASRE TO KNOW AND AM PROUD TO CALL FRIENDS
But more than that, they are very talented artists of the highest integrity.
They display honor and character in all they do.
And I am proud to display their work here.
FOR YOUR KIND CONSIDERATION
In these times of declining standards and global unrest, I have felt the
need to reexamine my priorities. I asked myself, “If I had only one year left
to speak, share and love....what would I do?”
It was clear to me that the only answer is to tell as many as I can
about the great hope in life that I have found.
About 41 years ago I became a follower of Jesus. And in all those years,
my experiences on this Earth coupled with my exposure to God’s Word
have served to convince me beyond all other thoughts and philosophies
that there is one God who created all and is actively involved in caring for
and providing for His creation.
I could take the time to teach my son about economics. I could teach
others how to carve glass. I could share so much that I have learned
over the years.....but the only thing of lasting value that I can share is
the life and death of Jesus Christ, His resurrection and what that can
mean to every living soul who would consider accepting the free gift
of eternal life that He offers us all.
In 1 Timothy, Paul said, “I am the chief of sinners”. That was not false
humility. That was the result of getting a peek at perfection and recognizing
that he misses the mark. I too am a contender for greatest sinner. I came
to realize that I was utterly incapable of saving myself. So far removed
from any standard of perfection that I could never deserve God’s love.
But amazingly, He loves me.
As I compared myself side by side with other humans I thought, “Hey, I’m
not so bad....pretty good in fact”. But no matter how good I thought I was,
I was a sinner, a liar, a thief......and worse. I realized that under the right set of
circumstances that I am capable of every imaginable crime. We don’t like to
think that about ourselves but it’s true.
So why would I think that God would be interested in me? I used to think
that in order to have a relationship with God that you had to get all cleaned up....
put on some white threads....steam clean my spirit....then go crawling on
my knees in a church up to an alter and beg God to be my friend.
Little did I know that while I was living for my own pleasure, while I was
using God’s name as a curse word, while I was ignorant and uninterested
in God himself........He knew me....He loved me....and He died for me.
When I realized the nature of His personality and the depth of His love
for me (and all of us)....how could my heart not be broken?
You can imagine my surprise. I did not have to get cleaned up to be in a
relationship with my Creator. I simply agreed to hang out with Him and
as my understanding of Him, myself and my world began to change,
so did my heart.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a sinner by nature. But I’m a sinner saved
by grace. A sinner who has God’s Holy Spirit to help during
trials and temptations. I am a man with access to the owner’s manual
for humankind. Jesus’ sinless life and righteousness are attributed
to me as though they were my own. Not only do I receive the grace that I
don’t deserve........but I do not face the judgement that I do deserve.
We often say that “nothing is free” and I believe that....with this one exception.
Salvation is free. Amazingly so. If I were to pay even one penny for it, it would no
longer be a gift. In fact, if I were in any way able to save myself....
...then Jesus died for nothing.
Dear brothers and sisters, we are all in the same boat. God does not
condemn people to hell. From the moment we are conceived we are
in a free fall headed to eternal separation from our Creator. God is in
the business of saving his creation. As many as will allow it. God is
so interested in saving us that he sacrificed His only Son. The only
sacrifice that could satisfy His sense of justice. A perfect sacrifice.
So please do not worry about what you have to give up to hang with
God. Simply agree to get to know him. In the long run you will realize
that what you did give up after all was the burden of guilt, the pain of
foolish choices, sorrow, hopelessness and helplessness (and for some, loneliness).
And those are traded for joy, peace and more.
Not one of you.........not one... has done something so wrong that God cannot
forgive you. Even if you can’t forgive yourself, He can. He will.
If you sincerely ask Him to.
In fact He’s waiting for you right now, where ever you happen to be. Please
don’t wait to speak to Him. You might just say, “God, if you're real, let me know.”
You have nothing to lose and much to gain.
I was 21 years old when God reached out and touched me..
..and in the years that followed He has proved Himself to me time and time again.
My understanding of my Creator and His character have only deepened.
How could I not be grateful?
It is a privilege and a joy to share my love of God and His Word with you.
God Bless You now where you are.