Jesus doesn’t work for Allstate

… and He is not a fire insurance agent!

I’ve heard many sad stories of people who at sometime in their life, accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior, asked Him into their heart, got saved… whatever you want to call it… but by their lives… even years later, nothing changes. Their lives seem to continue down a path of self-indulgence, pride, selfishness, and greed.  What happened? I truly believe that it is 100% impossible to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior, have the Holy Spirit reside in us (which is what happens when we accept Him) and not begin to change – absolutely impossible!  However, life is a journey and I thank God that His love knows no bounds!  For some, like myself it can take a long time for that ‘change’ to begin to take affect. It took me 19 years from when I first accepted Jesus as Savior (and was baptized in the cold American River in Placerville, CA at the age of 12) to actually start to understand the kind of (loving) relationship Jesus wanted to have with me.

For most of us, our ‘salvation’ experience is not a ‘flip on – flip off’ light switch… where one moment we are really bad and the next moment we are really good… in my opinion it’s more like a dimmer switch.  God’s light (the Holy Spirit) that is deposited within us when we accept Jesus, slowly begins to get brighter and brighter as He does His cleansing work within us.  But, like myself, that dimmer switch can stay unchanged and unmoved for quite a long time. Our life with Jesus is a process of the old ‘junk’ being removed and replaced with His good.  It is a journey of God taking our BC (before Christ) life story and miraculously transforming it into His own story of grace, forgiveness, hope and strength.  And the cool thing is that all God stories have an amazing ending… Heaven!

However, sadly, I’ve seen people who seemed to have ‘accepted’ Jesus out of obligation, expectation, ‘fire insurance’ against hell, etc., but it would seem apparent that the motives, sincerity and understanding of that decision may have been initially ‘sideways’ and their life is either unchanged or may have started the change process, but have slipped back into their ‘old life’? Do you know someone like this? I am here to encourage you because there IS HOPE!  The scriptures say that God wishes none to perish, but all to come to a saving knowledge of Jesus (2 Peter 3:9).  Yes, that scripture says ‘all’… and that includes our family members, our children, our neighbors, our friends, our co-workers… ourselves!  The greatest thing we can do is to pray for them… continually (Thess. 5:17).

Years later, after 19 years of my mom watching me struggle, make bad decisions, get hurt by others, hurt myself, etc. I found out that through it all… she never stopped praying for me… thank you mom!! Even now, tears come to my eyes thinking about it. She loved me and encouraged me through every hardship and difficulty… trusting that the work that God started in me at the age of 12 would not be in vain and would somehow change and transform me.  My mom is now seeing the ‘fruit’ of her years of praying. As funny as it may sound, through my own personal spiritual journey, I have learned that Jesus doesn’t work for Allstate… and He is not a fire insurance agent!  He is patient, loving and kind, but desires far more out of the relationship than just a simple prayer to keep me or anyone out of hell. He desires a deep love relationship with me.  Looking back, I can see that through my 19 years of ‘doing my own thing’, He continued to love me and be patient, in the hopes that His love would someday draw me back to Himself; as Romans 2:4 states, “It is the goodness of God that draws people to repentance.”

So, what about you… where are you in your spiritual journey? Has your spiritual “dimmer switch’ been slowly increasing, causing the light of Jesus’ love in you to shine brighter and brighter? If you do have that love relationship with Jesus and it’s living, breathing and active, I would encourage you to continue pursuing that love above all else!  There is nothing in this life that is more important or compares to a heath relationship with Jesus.

On the same note, if we have found the ‘dimmer switch’ of our spiritual life has not moved in a very long time, be encouraged, there is a very good probability that someone has been praying for you… and that is a pretty awesome thing!  Just look at the example of my mom! God has an incredible crush on you, has been chasing you relentlessly! He really likes you and really wants to be in a deep love relationship with you. That’s what we were created for! And the cool thing is, He’ll take us just as we are – our life – its ups and downs, its pains and hurts, weaknesses and strengths… whatever we may be carrying… He really just wants to make the story our life His own story… transforming ours into one of hope, peace, forgiveness, and purpose.  One of the other cool things about God is that He always allows ‘u-turns’. Is it time to stop looking at Jesus at ‘fire insurance’ and really begin to engage Him in the love relationship that He (and you) desire? It would be the best decision you and I could ever make!

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest

Matthew 11:28

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Comments
  1. J. Boudreaux says:

    Brian, I find this a very relevent posting. For most of my adult life I would pray for God to change one thing or another in my life for one reason or another. As I got older, I realized that He had been there all along guiding, protecting, delivering, and defending even though I wasn’t conscientously aware of it. It was like He was listening to my prayers with a smile on His face saying “Yes, I know all about you, all about the things you are praying for, and I am supplying them for you, you just don’t don’t realize it today. But you will.” Now I just look back and say “Boy, was I missing the point. He was there, even when I didn’t deserve it. Just like a good neighbor!” Thanks for your posting.

    J. Boudreaux http://quietstreams.wordpress.com

    • brian hetzer says:

      Thank you for your response and feedback! Good words! I think we’ve all been there. Every time I think I’ve got a grasp on God’s grace… every time I think I’ve found the outer boundaries of His mercy… He shows me that what I’ve actually ‘grasped’ and found the ‘boundaries’ too is just one small drop of water in the midst of a big ocean!! Blessings!

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