God Loves You

 •  7 min. read  •  grade level: 5
I came as a sinner to the Savior. It came about in this way, there was quite a revival at the chapel, where I attended. One night my “elder brother decided for Christ. This stirred me up, and I resolved to serve God. But it only needed the test which came a little while later to prove that this resolve was not worth much. Indeed at that time nothing would sooner have brought a blush to the very roots of my hair, than being seen with a Bible, or upon my knees in prayer.
Some time afterwards the estate passed into other hands, and every servant was dismissed. To my delight a situation was procured for me. There, with good wages, plenty of mates, and no restraint, I sought to gratify my unsatisfied heart by the pleasures of sin. Sometimes a letter from a Christian friend would be sent to me, but that part of it, which had eternity and its issues as its subject, was often unread, and the enclosed tract unheeded.
My duties often led me to the different race-courses, and it was my ambition to know the pedigrees of every horse on the turf. But God in mercy again spoke very loudly to me. A pony kicked at me; it missed me the first time, but struck me the next, and I fell to the ground badly hurt. My mates carried me upstairs, and the doctor said that half an inch the other way the kick would probably have killed me; but that, if inflammation did not set in, I should recover.
As I lay awake that night I thought of home, of my neglect of parents, of broken resolutions. When all was quiet I got out of bed, and told God that if He would raise me up, I would serve Him. And God did graciously restore me; but, alas! no more was heard of my resolve.
But the blessed God was long-suffering, and I had to have a more severe lesson next time. In the exercise of my own will I left my situation, and humiliating as it was, I could not get another. By one little circumstances or another I always missed it, and in this way it pleased God to show me the value of my true friends, and the hollowness of the friendships of those I had thought more of than of the authority of God's command to repent.
My money was gone, and I had no resource in God. How humbling it was to have to borrow from a kind brother! My pride did not like it.
Just at this time I received a letter from my sister, and this time I read it all through. She said,
"Look to Jesus."
This I thought I would do, so when the young men at the club where I was then staying were gone out, I got on my knees, and asked for a situation, again promising I would serve God.
But it was not till I had been three months out of work that I succeeded in getting employment. The head man was a Christian, and some three weeks after, he said,
"You have a strong voice, Charles." "Yes, sir, I have."
"Did you ever use it to praise God with?"
In a moment his words seemed to go right home to my heart. I was prepared for him to tell me how wicked I was, but this seemed to fix me.
I told him it was no good, I did not want to be a hypocrite.
"But, Charles, you have had your serious thoughts at times."
I told him I had tried to be different, but I could not give up smoking, I could not hold on.
"Why," he replied, "you have not to give up anything. God does not want you to give."
"The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom. 6:2323For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23).
You have to be the receiver. God does not say, "Give up smoking and swearing, and the theatre before you receive Christ."
And then the dear man went on to tell me,
"If you are to be saved, it will be as a sinner just as you are, though God hates your sins, He loves you. God wants you; the Lord Jesus Christ wants you; but the devil wants you, and he has got you."
And so with his hand on my shoulder he pleaded with me to turn to Christ. I told him how I couldn't bear to be laughed at.
"Ah!" he said, "they may laugh you into hell, but they can never laugh you out."
My mates were listening, and thinking I should get the best of the conversation, but he went on to speak, and I listened. He held up his hands, as if my soul was in the balance.
"Put into that hand," he said, "the laughs and jeers and reproaches of men, the forgiveness of sins, Christ a Friend with you here, and Heaven with Him forever; and put in the other hand your worldly friends, the pleasures of sin for a season (I don't deny there are such pleasures, Charles), and hell for ever; and choose this day which you will have."
That was about ten o'clock in the morning. It was my turn to stay in that evening, and about eight o'clock I was quite alone. Those words kept ringing in my ears:
"God loves you, and wants to save you; the Lord Jesus Christ wants you; but the devil wants you, and he has got you."
I sat down. I thought over my twenty years of sins, and broken promises, and it seemed now or never. For the first time in my life I really cried to God to have mercy on me, and that if it were possible for a poor, guilty sinner to know he was saved, that I might know it. I confessed everything there before God. I was completely broken down, and felt that. if I did go to hell I would go there trusting in the Lord Jesus.
About ten o'clock that night the dear servant of the Lord, who had spoken to me in the morning, felt such a desire to speak to me again, that he came back some miles, to see me.
"I'm going to be a Christian," I said.
He got out his Bible, and from there he showed me beautiful passages from God's Word—how the death of Jesus had met God's requirements and my need, how God had raised and glorified the Lord Jesus, and how that blessed One, enthroned in heaven, was worthy of the confidence of every heart.
Through grace I was enabled there and then to rest upon Him.
He then lent me a Bible, which told me more of Christ's present love and of His sure return.
It was nearly midnight before my mates came in, and found me with the newly-borrowed Bible before me.
"I am a Christian," I said.
"Hurrah!" replied one, "I'll give you a month!" But, thanks be to the God of all grace, the power of His love has held me for many years, and still holds me. With rejoicing heart I proclaim God as the Giver, and that the only condition I know for enjoying His salvation is still to go on receiving more largely from Him.
"Now in the glory,
He waits to impart
Peace to the conscience
And joy to the heart;
Waits to be gracious,
To pardon, and heal
All, who their sin
And their wretchedness feel."
May God use this story of my conversion to lead others to ask the question of all questions,
'What must I do to be saved?" And to receive the answer,
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved" (Acts 16:3131And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. (Acts 16:31)), and to act upon it by putting their trust and confidence in the Savior, who says, "Him that cometh to Me, I will in no wise cast out." John 6:3737All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. (John 6:37).