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...your plan and decision for life, your Statement Of Faith you can rest your soul upon...

Where are you going? Thank you for taking the time to consider this. It is important, but not required, that you surround yourself in a peaceful environment with as few distractions as possible. Clear your mind of your cares of present and think only on why you are here, what does it all mean and where you are going when all you know by your senses and all your moments are past.

These next few minutes you have chosen to spend reading this could quite possibly be the most valuable life-changing moments of your life. You will make a decision one way or another—either you will settle this in your heart and mind once and for all or you will get up and walk away, choosing to delay further this important life-saving decision. If you choose to settle this in accepting the plan for you by the One who created you, in the days, weeks and months ahead, you will grow and come to learn the magnitude of heaven's focus on you in this very moment. You will see things never seen before, understand things never understood before. A whole new world and meaning will open unto you. For now, just know this: God always, always, comes near to one who comes near to Him for examining the route and plan He has provided absolutely free, that's right—free!, for reaccess to Him. I say re-access because that is what it is—re-access. This is something you already sense within yourself, a sense of alienation from Him, an unfulfilled need deep within nothing in the material world has or can touch, a need to discover how to absolve that sense and fact of alienation, the finding and experiencing the full capacity of the human heart and soul as it is meant.

Know also He is not a disinterested party in your seeking this for yourself. He has a personal investment and vital interest in the process and outcome as well. It is His one greatest desire for you. The fact that you have stopped to turn your thoughts towards Him is evidence of the breathe of His Spirit who woos you or else you would continue on your way; for it is not human nature's way to seek Him. Just know he is present and attentive. Be open. Be honest. Think and speak to Him in your own words, from your own heart. But be willing to listen as well, listen to the truth of His Word as it and He speaks to your heart. It would be wrong for me to attempt to put words into your mouth or speak for Him. He is quite capable as well as you in expressing both your hearts to each other in this eternal matter. My words or role just now is simply to direct you to His and I thank you for allowing me to speak to you in this brief but ever so important moment and matter to your life.

Now that you've likely made plans for most aspects of your life, isn't it time to consider what will happen next? Are you prepared for that? I know you have thought about it. Everyone does. That is part of our nature and capacity in being human. If you're like most, you already have some preconceived ideas, ideas developed from what you've read, heard, and learned over your life. The question is: Are they valid? Will what you've heard, what you think and decide, prove true in the end? It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks or believes—only what you believe once hearing what He has said! That's what is important. He specifically says that: "faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17). You won't be able to say to Him in the end: "Well, so and so told me this, or, so and so told me that". It will only matter what you believed He said. That's why the need to see what He says and your decision upon hearing it is so personal and vital. What we think about it and ultimately decide has inescapable eternal consequences. Again, that's why it is crucial your decision is based in fact and upon what He says about it rather than yours or any others' ideas about it.

We're not talking about religion here, as defined by the world and taught in comparison by academia. That is mans' answer to the deep longing for fulfillment and sense of meaningful identity present in every human soul that becomes co-opted and corrupted as seen played out on the world stage in every generation of human history. One has only to read history or observe current world events to see the fatal consequences of that flawed and imperfect falsity. We are not talking about examining an institution and its dogma in determining if it may fit with your own personal views of the world and things to come, aligning with that institution and adopting their creeds for behavior and practice—becoming enslaved to an ideology. No. What we are talking about is something far more personal and transcendent, something between your heart and its Creator, something that is guided by an incorruptible truth which is consistent with a loving God who seeks to redeem and establish His primary nature of love within the heart of all, a love that produces peace and goodwill toward all mankind as He intended from the beginning. This is His kingdom. It is not earthly. One cannot buy their way into it nor perform any ritual or deed to enter. It is voluntary and He will never force it upon any one nor its true citizens upon another. As He draws to Himself through His love, once that love resides within one drawn, it will be the single tool He will use to draw others. It is the only true tool He sanctions. All others are false, as clearly seen from the opening to the closing pages of His written record of revelation.

Maybe, you're just beginning on your journey in life and still trying to figure and work things out for the here and now? You've thought about what's next but you really haven't taken the time to seriously consider it to the point of your own personal satisfaction, decision and belief—to settle it for once and for all. That's a good indicator. There is hope. Your heart is open. It shows you have serious thoughts toward the matter. It is an important issue. It shouldn't be lightly considered. You likely have friends or family who have encouraged you to do this on many occasions but you just haven't gotten around to it. However, this really isn't something you should delay.

So, for their sake, but more for your own, listen for just a moment, please. You know the peace and ease of mind that comes to your daily life, and nights, after you've made plans for whatever foreseeable need might arise. Right? For example, likely, you have purchased some type of medical or life insurance to cover those costs that would be unaffordable out of pocket when those physical and financial needs occur. There is no greater peace you will ever know, no better time than now, to settle what happens when your time here is over, whether you're just beginning, settled in, or coming to its end. As you will agree, you have no guarantee of another moment, not another breath, when that moment and opportunity for decision could pass and your inaction has brought inevitable consequences. You meant to do it, but just never did. It doesn't take great wisdom to see and conclude all living things eventually die—an indisputable fact. No power, no king, no esteemed or astute one can refute or escape this. All share in common the consequence of this truth. The empirical data is deafening. Our landscape is blighted with granite witnesses. It is doubtful you have seen to date any one in your travels that is, let's say, over 200 years old, right? So, just your own observations bear this out. In our modern world where absolutes are often-times questioned, you would agree this "absolute" likely ranks right up there at the top of the few commonly accepted, should you construct a list of your own. In addition, we all have known or heard of someone who seemed to be secure in daily life only to be suddenly whisked away either by accident, violence or the sudden stroke of a silent deadly disease.

With this said, would you not agree, then, that the most important decision you will make in your life is not one you will make that is of such short duration as your life itself, as important as any one may be, but one that will continue with you throughout eternity. In this life, most, if not all, of your decisions include and are made with the approval of those you have included in your life, since those decisions will affect their lives as well. It is not so with this eternal decision. You are making this decision exclusively for your own future well-being. Your decision does not transfer to or benefit them in any capacity for their future eternal well-being. Equally, their decision will have no bearing on or benefit to you in your life to come. Each must make and is solely responsible for their own choice in the end. This is not to say that often one is not influenced to make that personal choice by another's having done so. It just means each's future rests solely upon their own determination.

You may say, well, there are so many ways I've heard on how to obtain and live in a peaceable afterlife, to get to "heaven." Agreed. There are those confusing and contradicting voices. It is very difficult in today's culture with such a din surrounding this important subject, but every heart has been given by its Creator a unique capacity of sensing one's own condition and potential for Him to come near to speak to it the single truth of His provision for securing a life in eternity. Think for just a moment further. Alone you came into this world and alone you will leave it. As important as those are who are close to you, you owe it to yourself to put aside for a moment the pressures of your peers, the differing beliefs or non-belief of family or friends, to hear God's voice itself calling through that din of all others; for theirs are such He cannot be heard unless you separate to listen. Let His voice be exclusive in this eternal matter. Let His Word speak with clarity its authority in this. Let your decision be based on what He and it says after you have examined it for yourself. If you agree there is a God and that God created you, then, it is His final word you would want to base your decision for confidence in something so important to you. He alone can and is to be trusted in such a grave matter. Permit here if you will a simple illustration. When a mechanical problem develops with your car and you take it in for repair, you do not tell the service manager how to fix it, right, although you may have your own thoughts about it and possible opinions from friends or relatives? No. In the end, you trust exclusively the representative of the actual manufacturer of that specific vehicle. Why then would anyone be less thoughtful or trusting in a matter of their own life? Opinions are just that. Advice from others may or may not be beneficial, but when the manufacturer categorically says: "This is the problem and this is the solution", who can argue with that?

Let me ask you now, switching from cars back to us as humans, have you ever heard of or known a perfect person, one who neither thought nor did any wrong, nothing? Neither have I. I know I'm not one. Yet the life we expect in heaven is one we hope to be a state of perfection. I mean, who wants to live throughout eternity with a murderer as a next door neighbor, or a liar, or thief, or, someone you just plain don't like or trust? Maybe they've wronged you in some way. But yet both of you really expect to get there somehow. So, how do we go from being imperfect here to perfect there? You've got to wonder what must transpire for that transformation? What needs to be "fixed" for that to happen? What better place to start to discover the answer to this than the "manufacturer" Himself?

First, let me say you probably believe already there really is a God, a Creator, and that there is only one. Most do if they believe there is one. The differences in most world religions come from man's own ideas on how to get to Him for this transformation. You hear a lot say it depends on how you live your life here—your actions, good deeds, trying to do the right thing, etc. But does that seriously qualify you for such a state of perfection in the future? Your degree of goodness here? The type and number of good deeds you might do? Really? Boy that would be quite something to brag about by some to others if that were true, wouldn't it? After all, most agree there is some goodness in everyone, even the worst one. Bet you also know someone who just goes around doing good all the time. You might think, he's really setting the bar quite high. Everybody likes him or her. Looking at him or her you wonder how you measure up. Doesn't seem so encouraging if your life doesn't begin to compare. It doesn't for me. After all, who knows one's flaws better than themselves? Kind of depressing if one dwells on it. So, how does that get worked out? Where's the fairness in that? Don't we all believe in some sort of future justice—where wrongs are righted and rights are rewarded? Who gets to decide that, and how, so everyone is happy, I mean everyone? Equally? Do you know of a court or arbiter or judge you can give 100% trust in matters of your soul for absolute fairness?

Well, that trust and decision for absolute fairness and eternity involves Jesus Christ. Why? Because he was the only one who did live a perfect life and can be trusted in matters of eternal justice for all. He lived that life for just that purpose. Christians today may be mocked and sneered at because everyone knows one and not one of us is yet perfect, not one, not in this life. But no one really can point to one imperfection in Jesus, honestly. Pretty much every one, even most world religions, admit that he really lived and lived a holy life, sacrificing Himself for the good of others. So, consider His life, how He lived it and what he said about why he lived it in such a way and how it relates to you in this decision.

There's a book that tells of it somewhere near you right now. Go ahead. Pick it up, and may I suggest you open to the part called the New Testament towards the back if it includes an Old Testament. In the index under New Testament you will find a writing called: John, or The Gospel of John, or The Gospel According to John, or some other variation. This is the firsthand account of the three years this young disciple spent with Jesus. He is the one mentioned in the Bible leaning upon Jesus' breast at the table of the Last Supper. He was the only one of Jesus' 12 chosen disciples who was present at His crucifixion, witnessing it firsthand. As Jesus hang dying, He gave charge to John for the future care of His mother Mary. It is the same young man who ran with Peter and walked within to witness an empty tomb upon news of Jesus returning from the dead. This same disciple stood with 10 others 40 days later and gazed upon this Jesus rising from the ground into a cloud, disappearing after His promise to return.

In his writing, John is not reporting something that was told to Him. He is telling you something He witnessed himself, and staked his life on it! He was young, in his late teens or early 20's. He is the only one who was not killed, though they tried. He lived to be over 90 years old. His entire life was lived in witness to this Jesus who was the Son of God who came to rescue him and any others who would believe as he. He introduces Him in the first paragraph like this: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...

Now, this is the point that I mentioned earlier where you are drawn to Him and as such, you have His attention and will come close to your heart as you begin reading. For you, right now, heaven and earth are touching and angels are descending and ascending. Your eyes cannot see them but your heart senses. Read and just listen. He will speak to your heart and you decide based on what you hear. Likely, you will arrive at that point before finishing the 21 chapters but, please, do not stop reading until you have read this full account from a young disciple Jesus loved dearly. No, you don't have to read all of it in one sitting. That would take some time. But when you begin, read it and let it speak. Pause. Listen. Come back to it with minimal interim until finished. It may take a few days. However, your decision does not have to be delayed until you have completed it. You will know when that time comes as you read. When it does, it is imperative not to delay.

Tradition has it that John was also the only one of the 12 who died of old age, sometime in the last decade of that first century. It is also reported that in his final days when he was so weak they would bring him into a gathering to speak lifted above their heads on a litter. He would raise ever so slowly and speak with a whisper these words, words uttered to him by His Lord decades earlier: "Little one another." Then they would take him out in reverent silence. This is the essence of God's plan for you as you will learn when you read. He loved you first before you could love Him. He wants you to know that. He also wants you to know that He gave His Son because of His love for you (John 3:16). In addition, His Son willingly gave His life because of both His love for His Father and you. Who would do that but someone who loves in extreme? As you see what they have done and accept that, paying the price for your imperfect nature, you will come to and grow in your love for them. And because you then will love them, it will be within your new nature to love others as you never have before. Peace with Him and others will come. Life and relationships will change. He promises it. Anticipate it. That fulfillment will come your deepest need has always desired. He and His love alone is its answer! And all you have to do is accept it. It is an incomparable love, an exceptional love, an unconditional love, as you will discover. It doesn't matter what your present state is or past life has been or you have done! It is a love that brings true peace within the human soul! Why any would delay that peace that touches the depths of the human heart and soul that no other source is capable is a mystery. It can be yours, right now, if you desire it. You have waited long enough. You have come to the end of your search. It lies within your grasp. You may never be so close again if you turn away. I invite you. All who have come before you invite you. His word speaks of a great rejoicing before His throne when one comes. Come. Hear His own final words in His Book to you: And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely (Rev 22:17).

If at any point you would like assistance, have any questions or want to know more, we are here for you. Please don't hesitate to contact us. We will respond. For now, know that I am praying for you even though I do not know you by name. God knows. I pray for all who come to this point. You may contact me at any time.

- Ken

P.S. If you don't know where to get one of those books, the Bible, contact us. We will send you one for free. For now, you can find the writing I referred to, The Gospel of John, at our website: The Gospel of John. At any point in this decision process, and for further instruction from His Word, please read this selection:

"All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Jehovah hath laid on him the iniquity of us all."
Isaiah 53:6
"...there are none righteous no not one."
Romans 3:10
"For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."
Romans 3:23
"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 6:23
"...death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned."
Romans 5:12
"But God commanded his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners; Christ died for us."
Romans 5:8
"...what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;"
Romans 10:8
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."
Romans 10:9
"For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."
Romans 10:10
"For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."
Romans 10:11
"For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him."
Romans 10:12
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
Romans 10:13
"All 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
"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:"
John 10:27
"And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand."
John 10:28
"My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand."
John 10:29
" many as received him, to them gave he the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name."
John 1:12
"...Behold, now is the accepted time; now is the day of salvation."
II Corinthians 6:2

A simple prayer from your heart is sufficient, telling Him that you recognize your sinful separated state and need for His forgiveness, your belief that what He says is true and you desire that gift of rebirth into eternal life for yourself, just as Romans 10:9 & 10 states. No one is required to be present when you do this. He will hear and be true to His promise, regardless where you are or when it is! Certainly, you may know someone who already has done this and ask them to aid you or be present in this moment, but it is not required.

If and when you have done this, we hope there is someone close to you who can guide you in your next step of making this public as He instructs and to follow Him in Baptism as He also instructs. If you are not sure how to go about this, please, don't hesitate to let us know. Also, we would love to hear from you to congratulate you on this eternal choice and decision. God bless you!

Please print this page and pass along as you are led. - Ken Livingston