Are You On Your Way to Heaven?

Have you wondered how to get to heaven? Many people have ideas about getting to heaven. The sources for information that are readily available many times are the ones least likely to have the answers you’re looking for.

 There is an idea out there that if one has not offended humanity in some overt way, then heaven is surely possible. This is a popular belief of our day. Good works is a gospel quite prevalent in many religious sects. One must abide by a set of rules or do many works. This will surely reserve one’s place in heaven. The perpetrator of these lies leading people to hell is the enemy of our souls. The Bible says the devil, a predator, roams around seeking who he may devour (I Peter 5:8). He is successful in leading millions to believe in these ideas or others. Each of these mentioned is putting trust in oneself for salvation. It seems like a glance at humanity could bring an intelligent conclusion that salvation surely does not come from within the heart of humanity. But the enemy is vicious and clever, so the lies perpetuate from one generation to the next.

The Bible is clear that our works do not get us to heaven (Ephesians 2:8-9). We will express our faith through works once we are saved by faith in Jesus, but that is a compelling expression of our love and service to Jesus and His church, not out of obligation. The Bible is clear that no one is good, so all our sin is an offense to God (Romans 3:10-12). We all sin (Romans 3:23).

Many are missing the best information. There is only one way to fix the human heart. God made us in His image (Genesis 1:27), and He desires for us to know Him. God loves us. He loved us so much that He sent His one and only Son to die so we could have eternal life(John 3:16). Because there is only one way, there is no guessing. Jesus stated in John 14:6, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father except through me.” The statement is clear and spoken with authority by the One and Only One who can provide the way. The only way to God is through Jesus.

The world religions make it complicated and exhausting to get to God. Thank God for Jesus!. Jesus never sinned. This fact made Him the perfect sacrifice. In John 1:29, John the Baptist said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” The purpose is clear why Jesus came to earth. Jesus came to take away our sin. Because He never sinned, He could take our sin. He bore our sin when He bled and died on the cross. Because our sin is an offense to Him, we cannot get to heaven because no sin is in heaven. We have to be righteous and when we receive Jesus then His righteousness covers us and we are declared righteous.

Jesus made the way for everyone to come to God through Him. Although He provided the way with His flesh and blood sacrifice, not everyone will choose Him. It is a personal choice that every person on the planet, past, present, and future, must make. What to do with Jesus? Those who choose Him can know that His resurrection ensures resurrected life for them too. The assurance is when He returns, every person who has put their faith in Him will be resurrected, whether in the grave or still alive (John 14:1-3).

Some people reject Jesus in their last bitter breath. Some receive Him in their last believing breath. But everyone will decide. It is not an objective decision. It is not an arbitrary decision. Philippians 2 tells us that one day every knee will bow. Every tongue will confess when Jesus comes again. What you find the hardest to do now will be forced out of you because no one will be able to be in His presence, see His presence, or know the reality of His coming without being in submission. But it will be too late at that moment. Every human on the planet, past, present, and future, has to decide whether they will make that choice now. Now is the time. It will be too late the moment you die, or in the moment He appears. Now is the time.

I’ve included verses that will help you ponder so great a salvation. The most important decision you can make now is what to do with God’s Son, Jesus.

As you read these verses, I pray that you will believe these verses. I pray you will receive Jesus as your Savior. Jesus is the only One who ever claimed to be God. In John 10:30, Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” This so clearly declared Jesus is God. This is a life-changing statement of truth. Only Jesus could state this.

Please read and ponder these verses today. Jesus is the only way to God. I hope you decide to receive Jesus and claim Him as Lord of your life. He is so wonderful. He will be your dearest friend every day of your life. You will find His friendship the best and His love for you dear and kind. He is worthy of trust and He has a plan for your life that you would never think of on your own. If you decide to follow Him, you will wonder what took you so long. I know others who would agree with me about this. Please give your heart and life to Jesus today. I’ve never heard anyone say they regret it. Jesus is the way to heaven and once you know Him, your place is reserved.

If you are reading this and already have this relationship with Jesus, then please share this post with someone you know who needs to know how to get to heaven.

How to get to heaven:

John 3:16 & 17- “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.

Romans 3:23-for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…

Romans 6:23- For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Ephesians 2:8-9 – I mean that you have been saved by grace through believing. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. 9 It was not the result of your own efforts, so you cannot brag about it.

Acts 2:21 – And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

John 11:25 – Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me, even if he dies, will live.

Romans 10:9 – If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

Years ago, my husband and I shared this wonderful news with a group and when we led them to consider these truths, one man declared aloud to his wife, “Now we know how to get to heaven.” This man was around 90 years of age. The Lord was merciful to him and let him live long enough to believe and receive Jesus in his heart. Maybe wherever you are now, you too will receive this wonderful gift of grace, given freely by Jesus the Son of God.

Now is the time. May today be the day you can say with assurance, “I understand now how to get to heaven.”

These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

I John 5:13

© Valerie Rumfelt

When God Has You in a Place

Do you remember a time when you thought you needed something and it didn’t come? Maybe it was a report from the doctor, a friend to show up, for a situation to end, for a situation to begin, or a hug. But it didn’t come. What did you do? Did you cry? Did you pray? Did you question God? Did you harden your heart? Did you praise God? Did you give thanks to God? Did you complain to others or to God? What did you do?

Sometimes God has you in a place. Sometimes that place has no door for exit and no window for hope. What do you do? What can you do?

There’s a sense of powerlessness. Whatever you desire is not in your control to fix or attain. You can’t push things along. You can’t escape.

God has you in a place and you are forced to do things His way. You are forced to beg him for His intervention. You are forced to seek His perspective. You are forced to praise Him. You are forced to give Him thanks. 

Not too long after you begin to be honest with God and you quit carrying the desire, burden, need, hope, or longing, then you realize there is a burden bearer. There is a caregiver for your soul. There is a tear wiper and a compassionate ear. Even though He may seem silent, He is not inattentive. He is present.

When was the last time you poured out your heart to God? When was the last time you gave up being strong? When was the last time you went to your knees in surrender?

For the follower of Christ, this is where Christianity is proved. These are the places where no human can fulfill. You may know that God doesn’t even want you to share this with another human. It’s just you talking to Him. You didn’t think He was enough. You thought you needed a friend. A human. He is teaching you that HE is enough. He is your best friend. He is the one who can fix, fulfill, and fan into flame whatever the plan is. No matter how long you have to wait. Even if you don’t see Him do anything. Even if what you thought you needed never happens.

I could tell you what the Bible says about how valuable giving thanks is, being content, how He gives perseverance, how He gives strength to the weary, and so on. If you are a follower of Christ, you are familiar with all these promises. It’s your choice to cling to them.

What you may not be familiar with is waiting the way He wants you to wait. We will do most anything other than wait well. It seems so counterintuitive. But that is where the presence of God is. It’s that still, silent place, sometimes full of peace, sometimes uncomfortable.

Let’s not rush the process and ruin His plans with our own plan. He is a God of love who longs to give His children good things. Wait.

Waiting silently is the hardest thing of all.

Elisabeth Elliot

Destinations Matter

For a decade or more, my husband and I led a Bible study in an apartment complex community room every Tuesday night. The gathering was part of our weekly life, much like going to the grocery store. We did this because a resident in the complex requested we come there because she said the residents needed hope. When we learned of this, the timing was perfect since we were new in the community and trying to build relationships and reputation to birth a church. Establishing small groups was part of that strategy, so this invitation fit the mission. The years in the apartment complex yielded a harvest of Christ-followers, some precious friends, and vivid memories.This story is about one particular night Clark showed The Nativity Story film to the residents in that room. This movie is a cinematically beautiful one with music riveting its viewers to the story throughout the film.

At the conclusion, Clark presented the Gospel. The room was hushed as each was hanging on his every word. It was clear the Spirit was working after the dramatic depiction of Jesus’ birth in the movie. I thought surely no one would resist the palpable presence of the Spirit and prayed that no one would. Clark led in a prayer to give anyone a chance to ask Jesus into their heart. Immediately after, since the room was quiet, it was easy to hear a very old gentleman talking to his wife. He shared that now they knew for the first time how to get to heaven. Everyone at their table called Clark and me over as the man and his wife signed their commitment card, which stated they’d prayed to receive Christ. All around understood the significance of what had occurred.This lifelong Catholic couple was in their 90’s. He’d been a high school teacher in the community for his adult life. But for those few moments in this community room, he recognized that stability didn’t come from longevity or even a significant career. He realized that his need for stability, for certainty, would not come from anything he had done. It all came clear to him that salvation in Jesus was the only way to heaven.From that point on, this couple came to Bible study faithfully. Within a few months, the husband died. Did it matter that we’d been obedient to that complex when invited? Yes. Did it matter that this dear, aged couple know the One who saved their soul? Yes. Do spiritual destinations matter? Yes. Where you choose to go could have a direct impact on someone’s destination for eternity.

Jesus answered, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father, except by me. John 14:6

He Died For Me

He died for me?

How can that be, that Jesus chose to die for me?

Nailed to a tree, unjustified.

His blood applied. What news! That Jesus died for me!

He knew His purpose, He knew the Plan.

God would come in the form of man.

To live with us and dwell with us.

For me, for ME? He died for me.

The joy before Him, He endured the cross.

He suffered and scorned its shame.

Left without a friend, obedient to the end.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for me.

Foretold in Isaiah,

Spoken for by John.

Baptized in the Jordon, the sky would open,

The Father had spoken and the mission had begun.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for me.

Tempted by Satan, proved faithful by Scripture,

He preached repentance and called His disciples.

He healed the sick so I could see.

This Jesus, yes Jesus, He died for me.

Spoke from a mountain and told of the fountain,

The life we could have in Him.

Love the lowly, avoid adultery.

Be salt and light, and love, peace and mercy.

Stay free, live free. His mind always on me.

This Jesus, merciful Jesus. He died for me.

Give it all away, pray and forgive,

Store up treasures where one day you’ll live,

Don’t worry or judge. Ask, seek and knock.

Enter the narrow gate and stay close to the flock.

He’s prepared a way.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for me.

No houses on sand, build a solid foundation.

Have faith, be healed and let His glory be revealed.

Be devoted and follow, let Him calm your storms.

No sacrifices needed, only a heart turned towards.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for me.

The workers are few, the LOST are many.

Pray to the Lord for more help.

He wants to save, let’s pray today,

for our families, friends and enemies.

He loves them all, we don’t understand.

This Jesus, unfathomable Jesus, He died for me.

He calls us out every single day,

Go, tell, and be sure to pray.

Love in my Name, and do all for Me.

I promise to provide and give rest when you’re weary.

Keep my Sabbath, stay faithful in meeting.

Your strength comes in numbers, love one another deeply.

His plan is good, better than your own.

This Jesus, Son of Man, He died for me.

Love as a child; stay on the straight and narrow.

I’ll provide your food, your rest and a bright tomorrow.

No worry for clothes or a place to lay your head.

All that is my joy to give, trust me, you’ll be fed.

Such love, such care we don’t deserve.

This Jesus, my Redeemer, He died for me.

He came as a babe, so lowly and small

no place for Him, but a dirty stall.

The King of Kings and the Lord of Lords

He came so I can live.

He humbled himself, our example, the Servant.

He taught us and so now, we can be fervent.

Our devotion is true and our lives shine,

All for His glory and none for mine.

Because He lives, I can live too.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for YOU.

Defeated and mocked or so it appeared.

They stripped Him, but couldn’t take His glory.

Even to the end, redemption told the story

For one who was on His side – paradise was his reward.

The curtain torn, they laid Him in a tomb, guarded by soldiers,

Oh, such doom.

But victory was coming, the women were running,

to tell that they had seen Him!

To many He appeared, even to those He loved dear,

And now He reigns on His throne above.

This Jesus, My Jesus, all for love, He died for YOU.

The day and hour is not known, but one day He will come.

For now, He reigns in our hearts and on His heavenly throne.

This Jesus whose blood was shed for me

has made my life worth living.

This Jesus, my Jesus, He died for me.

It happened long ago we know, and yet the truth remains.

His resurrection ever told, through the truth of His claims.

They cannot prove otherwise, His followers know it’s true,

for we are forever grateful and try to show it in all we do.

He is the Way, the Truth, the Life. He is the only One.

He’s the God of all gods and the only true Son.

It is our joy today to honor Him and bless His Name,

For we know He lives because our lives are changed.

This Jesus, the Powerful Savior, it’s Him we celebrate.

The cross was the bridge for our sin sick souls

Our hellish lives could now be redeemed.

If we know Him in our hearts, we cannot help but sing.

The One who’s closer than a brother,

The One who calls us His friends.

It doesn’t seem possible, this personal Savior.

He’ll see us to the end.

Heaven is our future, Hell has lost its sting.

Through generations till He comes, His truth forever rings.

The best thing that has happened is we know deep down inside,

He makes His home in our hearts and there He now abides.

No more could He have done,

His love has set me free.

This Jesus, yes Jesus, He died for me.

by Valerie Rumfelt – based chronologically on Matthew’s gospel

Hope for Dolores

Rhode Island, geographically, is the smallest state in the United States. However, it is the second most-densely populated state. This unique state was our home for 11 years, as North American Mission Board, church planters. The state motto, HOPE, was harmonious with our assignment; to bring the HOPE of Jesus through the expression of a local, Christ centered church.

From the beginning we experienced God; sometimes in joys and results, and other times in silence and endurance.60-100-10273-2

Building relationships by the power of the Holy Spirit is necessary to planting a church. Even though some may never enter the church doors, relationships build the reputation of the church.

One of the first relationships began in the first place we lived. Our adjoining neighbor was Dolores. What a fireball she was! Born in Boston (with the accent to prove it), Catholic all her life, a widow, knowledgeable, with the composure to survive. She was in her early 90’s now, alone, physically limited, and although she didn’t practice her faith, she clung to it with all she had.

Then we came. The Mississippian’s planting a church in her town! After we met, we’d occasionally make visits to check on her. She watched TV and read, and seemed to accept her life as it was. We snatched as many opportunities to engage with her spiritual need.

One day, she announced she’d be moving to a single level,efficiency apartment. We exchanged addresses, phone numbers, assisted in her move, and soon, our neighbor was gone.

Part of building the friendship with Dolores was to establish who we were, why we came and who we served. Her move would not hinder our relationship with her.

We talked by phone. I would plan visits and bring requested donuts and coffee. One on one chats, sorting through her mail, and sometimes, assisting her with some grooming tasks were common activities.

Dolores often wanted to hear about our work. Talking about Jesus was a natural topic in our conversations. She was curious.

One divine visit, she answered the door agitated and panicked. This was most unusual. Glad to see me, she was anxious to sit at the table. As I divided the snacks, she started to tell me about a recent occurrence since our last visit.

While lying in bed one night, she began thinking about her husband and remembered a verse she’d heard in Catholic school – Jesus would come like a thief in the night. She then wondered if her husband was in heaven, but then fear gripped her heart as she wondered about herself.  If Jesus returned in that moment, would she go to heaven?

Hearing this thrilled my heart. God was at work and was revealing Himself to her! The weight of her experience melted away as she shared. She began to realize her day of salvation had come. Now she could receive Jesus into her heart. She could know if Jesus came “like a thief in the night”, she would be ready. Right then she prayed to Jesus.

She wept.

As we pondered the life changing moments, she wondered aloud why no one had ever told her about Jesus before now.

Gazing out the window, she reflected on the years she’d walked back and forth on the sidewalk there in town – going and coming from Catholic school. “I never heard about Jesus and that He could be mine.” I said, “Well, you know now, Dolores.”

Only a few more visits on God’s eternal calendar were allowed with her. I noticed a blanket of peace wrapped her. She started reading her Bible.

I can only imagine the relief she felt in those last days of her life. Going to bed was no longer a torment and one night that’s where she slipped into Jesus’ arms. The place where the Holy spirit had captured her attention ended up as a place of peaceful passage to her heavenly home.

HOPE had come to Dolores.

Praise be to the God and Father of our LORD Jesus Christ! In his great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you…I Peter 1:3-4

 

©Valerie Rumfelt