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by Janelle Goodwin
5/13/2013 / Testimonies
A Woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised Proverbs 31:30b
As my family found a church to join, I became involved with the youth group. They had an established, organized program that instilled in us a daily quiet time, scripture memorization, weekly bible lessons, and what it meant to do true Christian services. At first I did each of these things just to say I did it. I can remember sitting on the bed with my brother dividing up the days in our quiet time and copying each others journals. After all, they never checked the quality of the work; they just wanted to see that it had been completed.
Then God began working in my life. He began to be real to me. He began to become the most important person in my life. But there was always a problem with my assurance of salvation. Every time the opportunity was given for salvation it seemed like I would have the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other shoulder confusing me if I was truly saved and on my way to heaven or not. I would talk to the preacher and others about it and how it would torment me. I went to the altar for rededication several times and was even baptized again believing that would solve everything. It didn't. I still felt as if I was not going to heaven should I die. So every night as I went to sleep I would pray to God. I would tell Him, "God, I love you. My heart's desire is to serve You and live for You. I want to go to Heaven if I die, so PLEASE, if I'm not saved, then save me". I would pray this prayer everyday. Ever since God began working in my life, I've changed the way I talk, the places I went, the people I associated with; everything was different then they used to be. Just by looking at me on the outside you would say I was definitely on my way to Heaven, but inside there wasn't a peace.
On Wednesday night, June 12, 1996, a week long revival at our church changed my life forever. While I was getting ready for church there was something holding me back. I just really did not want to go to church tonight. But I fought the desire to stay home and received the victory over the struggle of my salvation.
It was a typical service. The minister was preaching God's love from 1 John, then the time came for the alter call. It was the standard closing to a service. The altar was open to all those that were in need of salvation. I did my usual prayer from my seat, "God, if I'm not saved, then save me. You know I want to be in Heaven with you." But that's when it changed. It was at this time that the guest minister spoke up. He said that salvation can only come with a true repentance. There isn't such a thing as "God, if I'm not saved, then save me" That caught my attention! It hit me. How could he read my mind? How did he know those were the exact words I was just praying? God, is that You? Am I not saved?
Then I moved; I made my way to the altar; I was met by our pastor's wife. She showed me in the scriptures where we must confess with our mouth's and believe in our hearts. It was at that time that I confessed that I was a sinner and that I needed Jesus Christ to come into my life as my savior. As I got up from the altar I looked around, I was not by myself. There were 10 other people doing the same thing I was doing. It was wonderful knowing that I had received the peace of salvation. I knew without a doubt that I was on my way to Heaven. Everything around me was clear. I could breathe better, the sky was bluer and the grass was greener. It was the peace of God that filled my soul.
Titus 2:11-14 tells us that it is the grace of God that brings us the free gift of salvation. This is a gift that is offered to all men. So, we know that God desires for everyone to have the firm foundation of salvation. Through this salvation He begins to teach us to give up our wicked ways by denying the ungodliness of this world.
Jesus gave his life for us so that He could save us from all of our iniquities. He has rescued us from everything that is evil in thi9s world and wants to make our hearts pure for Him. He wants us to be purified, peculiar people excited about doing work for His sake. He wants us to be His people and to be eager about doing what is right.
So why do we need to be pure? Because Jesus died on the cross for our sins to make us pure. We must set our minds to focus on the blessed hope of the glorious appearing of God and our Savior Jesus Christ.
God desires for us to live free of our sins. God gave us life so that we might have it more abundantly. This abundant life can only be reached through the son of God, Jesus Christ. God loved us so much that while we are sinners He sent His son to die for us on the cross. But there is only one problem the word "sinner". God also said that for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. So because of our sin we can not have the abundant life.
Sin is the overstepping of the law, the boundary between good and evil. When you sin you depart from that which is right, you miss the mark and fail to meet the standard of God. If we do not abide by the law, rules or the standards that are set before us then we sin.
The Bible tells us that we are to flee from anything that has to do with things of man. We need to have nothing to do with the worldly things. If we discipline ourselves for the purpose of Godliness than we will be on the path of righteousness. Sin is the same as breaking God's law, everyone who sins breaks God's law. It is our goal to raise these standards and fight the temptation to sin. We need to purpose in our hearts to follow after the laws of God.
The world should know whether we are Christians or not just by the fruits that we bare. We can tell a fruit tree by the fruit that it produces; we are to do the same with Christians. We need to be producing love, joy, peace, longsuffering, goodness, gentleness, faith and temperance; which are the fruit of the spirit.
According to James 4:17, "Therefore to him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin". Doing wrong is sin. God says that it is better for us not to know the way to righteousness, than for us to know the right way and not do it. All we are required to do is the will of our Father, than he will take care of the rest. But if we cannot even do that then we are sinning. We know that it is right for us to do what God tells us to do according to His word. His word is right and not doing according to His word is wrong and that is sin. God asks for us to come out from among the world and be separate. Now that we know what sin is we need to change! We need to be willing to yield ourselves to do the right thing.
James 1:13-16 tells us that the temptation of sin is not of God. Any evil temptation is from the devil. Satan will tempt any person. He always knows your weakest point and throws things at you when your guard is down. Satan even tempted Jesus. He waited until Jesus had fasted for 40 days; he thought Jesus would be weak enough to give into his evil ways. You will always be tempted in one of three ways the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, or the pride of life. Even though we will be tempted, we must follow the example that Jesus laid before us and stand strong against the evil ways of the enemy. Jesus used one of the weapons to fight His battle when He was tempted. For every temptation that satan threw at Him, Jesus said "it is written", satan could not argue with the word of God.
It is not sin to be tempted it is when we fall into the temptation when we sin. Sin brings death; satan is the ruler over death. I do not know about you, but I was given life through Jesus Christ as my savior that I might have it more abundantly and that is exactly what I plan on receiving. As a Lady of Virtue, we should desire to stay close enough to God to be able to resist the temptations of the devil.
Jesus tells us in John 8:31-47 that if we have faith in Him and we obey what He tells us to do then we will be His disciples. We will know the truth because Jesus is the way, the truth and the life - and this truth will make us free. So what will we be free from? Anyone who continues to sin (knows to do right and does not do it) they are a slave to sin. If we are constantly not doing the right thing than we are sinning and we are a slave to sin. Jesus is trying to show us the truth. He is telling us what He saw when He was with His Father. But the only advice that we are listening to is the advice from the father of this world. When God reveals to us something in our lives that He would like to change, He will make us aware of this sin each time that we do it. As we become more and more aware of this sin then we will not do it as often. Soon we get to the place where we do not do it at all.
Once we have gotten to the place where that sin is not as evident in our lives than satan realized that we are becoming more Christ-like and he begins to get in the situation. He does not like for us to make these positive changes. He begins to place thoughts in our minds, these thoughts will always be lies, satan is a liar, and he can never tell the truth.
The father of this world is the devil; we do exactly what he wants us to do. He has been a murderer and a liar from the beginning. There is nothing truthful about him. Everything he says is a lie. Not only does he lie, but he is also the father of all lies.
God wants to be our father. If God were our one and only true father than we would love Jesus more than we do, because Jesus was sent from God. He did not come on His own. Everything Jesus tells us is the truth; we cannot find any sin in Him. Yet we still do not have complete faith in Him. Anyone who belongs to God will listen to His message, but we do not belong to God, so we refuse to listen. As Ladies of Virtue we need to stop listening to the lies of the devil and begin listening and obey the truth of God. He showed me the need for salvation is the key to unlock the soul. Salvation is as simple as John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth on Him will not parish, but have everlasting life."
"For God so loved the world" Because God loves you, but not just You, He loves all mankind. God loves the people of this world so much. We will never be able to understand the love that God has for us. The greatest way that we can show our love for anyone is to die for that person, God showed His love for us when He sent his only son into the world so that we might live through Him.
Real love is not our love for God, but the love of God for us. God sent His son to be the sacrifice by which our sins are forgiven. They used to use animal sacrifices to get rid of their sins and to show God they loved Him in the Old Testament. God showed us his own ultimate love and sacrifice when; even though we sin and do all of these wrong things; He sent His only child, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for us. God sent His son to be the sacrifice by which our sins are forgiven. God showed us His love for us, have you accepted His love? Do we show our love for God? Do we show others the same love God showed for us?
"That He gave His only begotten Son" God gave us the Bible for instructions on how to live a life pleasing to God. God does not want us to sin, so He told us how to live each day. But, if we do sin, then Jesus Christ is the sacrifice that takes away our sins and the sin of all the people in the world. Jesus Christ always did the right thing, He never sinned but He became sin on our behalf. Jesus, in whom there was no sin, become a man so that he could take away our sins, He did not miss the will of God at any time or in any way.
Through Jesus Christ is the forgiveness of sins. Through Him, everyone that believes is freed from all things. Jesus wants us to become the righteousness of God through Him, so when we ask for forgiveness He will speak to the Father for us. Jesus Christ personally carried the load of our sins in His own body when He died on the cross. He wants us to be dead to sin, but live in righteousness, by His stripes that healed us. Jesus was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities, and he was chastised so that we might have peace. But with His stripes we are healed. God is so overflowing with kindness for us that he took away all of our sins through the blood of His son. We are saved by the forgiveness of our sins according to the riches of His grace. We need to look upon our old sin nature as dead and unresponsive to sin, and instead be alive to God, alert to Him through Jesus Christ our Lord.
"That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish" Jesus is the life giver; He raises the dead and gives them life again. We are to preach the good news everywhere that Jesus is ordained of God to be the judge of all of the living and the dead. Anyone who believes in Him will live again. If you do not believe on the name of Jesus Christ then you are already condemned to hell, which was made only for the devil and his angels. But you can live eternally if you just believe the name of the only begotten Son of God, Jesus. Everyone who believes in Him will have his or her sins forgiven through His name.
All you need to do is believe on His name and trust Him to become a child of God. God wants to give his children everything there is. All who trust Jesus to save them will have eternal life, but those who do not believe or obey Him will never see heaven. All we have to do is believe on Jesus and we can have eternal life.
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you and your household can be saved. He gives eternal life for believing in Him. God has given us eternal life and this life is through His son. Whoever has Jesus has life; but whoever does not have Jesus, does not have life.
"But have everlasting life." If we believe in our hearts, that God loves us and that He sent His only son, Jesus Christ; to die on the cross for our sins, then we can say that our home is not this world, but it is eternity in Heaven with the Father and His son. If we believe on what we have been taught, and stay in close fellowship with God and Jesus then He will give us what He has promised us Eternal Life.
If we believe on Jesus we will not die, but we shall be given new bodies. All of this will happen in a twinkling of an eye the trumpet will sound and the Christians who have died will suddenly become alive and those Christians who are still alive will have new bodies and will be brought up to heaven to meet with Jesus.
While we are here on earth serving Jesus, He is preparing mansions for our homecoming. When everything is ready He will come get us so that we can be with Him for ever. He will wipe away all tears from our eyes and there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor pain. All of our earthly problems will be gone forever.
How much does He love you? So much that He sent His son into the world to die for you and me. The bible tells us that there is no greater love than a person who will lay down their lives for a friend. God showed us the greatest love by sending His only son to die for us. And Jesus showed us His love to us by laying down His life for us. What do I need to do to be saved? Believe in your heart that Jesus died on the cross for your sins. Why is salvation necessary? So that you will have the everlasting life in Heaven.
If salvation is not a key that you have, please make that change in your life right now. This is the first step in becoming the Lady of Virtue that God created us to be. Please confess your true repentance, that you realize you are a sinner. That you believe in your heart that God sent Jesus to die on the cross for your sins. You are asking forgiveness for your sins and for Jesus to live in your heart to dwell with you and guide you in Godly living.
Lady of Virtue Ministries started as Janelle Goodwin attended Bible College in upstate NY. Janelle became burdened to see souls saved from eternal condemnation. Upon returning home from Bible College, she also became burdened to see women of the world develop characteristics of a Proverbs 31
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