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Just As I Am

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Dean Butler

In a small church nestled among pines, there was a man named Jacob. He was known in the congregation as a devout believer, always the first to arrive for services and the last to leave. Jacob's dedication to his faith was evident in every aspect of his life, from his involvement in church activities to his fervent prayers.

One Sunday morning, as the congregation gathered for worship, the familiar hymn "Just as I Am" began to play. Jacob, sitting in his usual pew near the front, joined in singing the words he had known since childhood:

"Just as I am, without one plea,

But that Thy blood was shed for me,

And that Thou bidst me come to Thee,

O Lamb of God, I come, I come."

As the melody filled the sanctuary, Jacob's heart was stirred in a way he had never experienced before. It was as if the words of the hymn took on new meaning, piercing through the facade of spirituality that had subtly crept into his life.

During the sermon, the pastor spoke from John 6:37, emphasizing the invitation of Jesus: "All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out." (John 6:37)

Those words echoed in Jacob's mind long after the service ended. He realized that he had been striving to earn God's approval through his actions, always feeling like he fell short of perfection. But now, in the simplicity of Christ's invitation, Jacob found a profound sense of freedom.

Throughout the week, Jacob studied the Scriptures, seeking to understand more about God's grace and unconditional love. He came across Ephesians 2:8-9, which became a cornerstone of his newfound understanding:

"For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9)

The weight of trying to earn God's favor lifted off Jacob's shoulders as he embraced the truth of God's grace. He no longer felt the need to perform or measure up; instead, he simply came to God as he was, trusting in the redemptive work of Jesus Christ.

Jacob's transformation was evident to those around him. His prayers became more heartfelt, his interactions more genuine. He shared his journey with fellow church members, encouraging them to rest in God's grace and to come to Him just as they were.

As the weeks passed, Jacob's joy and peace grew deeper, rooted in his newfound understanding of God's love. He continued to worship with the hymn "Just as I Am," but now it carried a richer, more personal meaning—a reminder of the unconditional acceptance and love he found in Christ.  Email Dean:

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