Celebrate Your New Birthday
I had been drafted by the Chicago Bears, and my older sister lived on the south side of Chicago. She would invite me to come to church with her, but I would generally find a reason why I couldn't. One day, one of my sister's friends got on the phone with me and asked me a pointed question. She asked me if I was saved. To myself I said, "I'm not sure what you're talking about." She then asked me if I had ever prayed the sinner's prayer, based on Romans 10:9 which says: "...if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you shall be saved." That day I prayed the prayer, but didn't really understand it until sometime later.
My sister continued to invite me to attend her church, but encouraged me to get there early or I'd have to stand in line to get a seat. I told her if I wanted to stand in line to get a seat, it wouldn't be to go to church! I simply didn't understand. Then my girlfriend Tiffany (who is now my wife) suggested we try going to my sister's church. But since I knew that the services came on TV on Wednesdays, I opted to try that first. Finally, I decided to go with Tiffany to a service, and we've never been the same. Since that time, as I've heard the truth preached, studied the Bible and grown in my faith, I've realized that there were so many things I didn't understand. I was so close, but I didn't fully grasp it.
One day, our pastor preached a sermon on the importance of knowing your new birthday. He was referring to the day you pray and ask Jesus into your life—the day you are born spiritually. I couldn't really remember the exact date so I prayed again —and this time I made sure I didn't forget. In fact, I had dog tags made to celebrate the day,October 13, 2002.
My life is not perfect. I still find myself doing or thinking things that aren't consistent with my faith. But over the last few years, there has been a gradual change. That's what life is about—conforming more and more to the image of Christ—how God wants you to be. All I wanted was to be a successful young man my family could be proud of. But I have even more than that—I have a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Written By Roosevelt Colvin, Linebacker for the New England Patriots
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