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Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson

Pastor Cecil Thompson
Cecil Thompson

2 Corinthians 5:16-18

"From now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation."

Do you ever feel like you would like to have a new start? Perhaps you have made some foolish choices and find yourself in a real quandary. Regardless of your own actions or those of others, you feel that you would just like to begin again.

Years ago I was working for the Idaho Law Enforcement Planning Commission. We had a custodian who was on work release from the Idaho State Penitentiary. He was in my office one day and asked if I may be able to help him.

As we talked he told me a story of failure and pain that stretched back across the years of his life. Virgil was in his sixties and told me that he had been in and out of prison for all of his adult life.

He asked if I might speak in his behalf to the Parole Board. I had witnessed to him about the Lord and there was some indication that he had accepted the Lord. Still I asked him why he thought he would be able to stay out of prison this time since he had previously failed so many times.

He stunned me with this statement: "I have reached the age that if I ever come back, I will die in prison and I don't want to die inside the prison walls."

I agreed to speak in his behalf and he was paroled and continued working for our agency. It was only a few months later that Virgil failed to report for work. When I checked on him I was told that he had died suddenly. His wish to not die in prison had come to pass. My wish is that his heart was truly right with God.

How can we insure a new life in Christ and to have our name written in the Lamb's book of life? In John 3:7, Jesus told Nicodemus that it was necessary to be born again. That is accomplished by confessing that we are sinners and that only Christ can cleanse us and make us fit for heaven. It is not in being as good as possible, but rather humbly bowing before Him and inviting Him into our life.

I think it is safe to say that many who are "born again Christians" live a life that is far from God's standard. At the beginning of the year 2009 it is an excellent time to make a new commitment to live our life for Christ. World events strongly point to the soon return of Christ. I pray that we may live for Him with all that is in us from this day forward.

Blessings dear hearts. Draw near to God today, trust Him completely and be a blessing!

--- Pastor Cecil


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