Kneeling with me to say "night, night prayers," my mother tucked me in saying, "If you are a good girl, you will go to Heaven. So you try real hard to be a good girl."
Determined to get to Heaven, I prayed every morning that God would help me be good. Usually before 10:00 a.m. that prayer went unanswered. Not understanding why I was so mischievous, I tried appeasing God by reading the Bible, praying, attending church, and living a good life.
Setting a course for my life, I watched all my dreams come true. I married a wonderful man, he made more than enough money, we had two beautiful children, and lived in a house I never dreamed would be mine. Happiness was my lot in life, so why did I feel so empty? There was something unfulfilled in my heart and I did not know how to fill it. I continued to read my Bible, pray, and go to church.
Busy raising my family, I didn't think much about Heaven until the doctor hit me with the news, "You are pregnant." My mind burst in all different directions, from ecstatic euphoria to numbing fear. For medical reasons doctors had warned me my last baby should stay my last baby. Fear overtook me as I realized I could die. I wondered, How good do I have to be to get to Heaven? Am I good enough? I knew the answer. I looked good on the outside, but my insides would never be acceptable to God. I realized if I died I would go to Hell. My perfect world fell apart.
No longer empty, my heart filled with fear. I needed help. Heading to Hell, I visited different churches in search of spiritual guidance. Sitting in the pew of the Rome, New York, Christian and Missionary Alliance Church, I found the Truth.
I could never be good enough to go to Heaven. The Bible says all have sinned. Jesus willingly died on the cross to pay the penalty for my sin and three days later He rose again. Belief in Jesus Christ is the only way to Heaven. A month before my son was born, I stood at my kitchen window and prayed, "Dear Lord, I can't do this myself. Please forgive my sin. I believe Jesus died for me, and rose again on the third day. Thank you, Jesus. I give my life to You. Do with me whatever You please."
He pleased to do a lot. Immediately, my empty heart filled with joy. Fear was gone. Now, when I read the Bible the words weren't just letters on a page, but alive with meaning. My husband rededicated his life to the Lord and we began attending the Rome Christian and Missionary Alliance Church. Our son was born healthy with no complications. I joined a women's Bible study and was discipled. Two years after my conversion, my husband and I were called to ministry during a service at Camp-of-the-Woods under the preaching of David Howard. Four years later, Dan entered the ministry as a Pastor with the Christian and Missionary Alliance.
During a sermon Dan preached on the parable of the talents God called me to write. He spoke to my heart that my devotional writings were doing no good buried in my file cabinet. I thank God for my four books, Splashes of Serenity: Bathtime Reflections for Drained Moms, Splashes of Serenity: Bathtime Reflections for Drained Wives and We All Married Idiots: Three Things You'll Never Change About Your Marriage and Ten Things You Can, and Praise the Lord and Pass the Chemo: A Hopeful Response to a Hard Reality.
I gave my life to Christ in 1980. My once-empty heart remains filled with Jesus, and I'm on my way to Heaven! Hallelujah!