I was blunt and direct with my message, letting them understand that they were on the wrong path obviously, but I was never judgmental. God has always kept me humble in my witnessing opportunities over the years, spiritually opening my eyes to understand that I was no different than the wretches and wounded souls I was trying to help (there but for the grace of God go I). The only good in me is what God put there, so why would I take pride in what was given to me and what was done in His power, not mine. I would usually witness to the boys about my troubled teen years and would usually tell them a few Bible verses, whatever the Holy Spirit laid on my heart to share out of the treasury of verses I had committed to memory. Then, I would explain what the verses meant. Also, I would end every message with an opportunity to pray a simple sinner’s prayer for salvation. The words are not important because the sinner’s prayer is not an incantation for magic. If you get the words wrong, but your heart is right, God will understand what you meant.
It is always the heart that God is after. It is too easy to understand intellectually without any commitment of the heart, or to put up a façade, an image of doing the right thing without actually being changed, without any deeper devotion -- just legalistic, very limited, compartmentalized religious service which remains under your control and never taxes you too hard. Real commitment of the heart opens up real change as Jesus enters our hearts to apply the blood, which cures us of sin, then leaves the Holy Spirit there as His marker of ownership and a source of power for us to live the Christian life and grow spiritually, becoming more like Him every day. The sinner’s prayer is a plea for real, genuine intervention and help from the One, True Living God and Creator of the universe. During this time of my ministry, I would always explain to the boys how much God loved them, proof of which was the sacrifice of His only Son, and since He already loved them and accepted them warts and all, He just needed them to surrender to Him and to His control of their life in whatever words they could find.
But it is always good to put Jesus in the words since that is the Door through which the Father wants us to enter into fellowship with Him. It is His Chosen Path, so who are we to question Him or His method? HE is GOD. We are not. Not even close, despite what the eastern mystics and New Age people claim. Their religion is a legalistic religion of pride that lifts up the human heart to claim that humans are gods, or that there is a part of some vague, nebulous god that indwells all things and is in us as well. But from the beginning of our lives, there is nothing good in us, certainly not a deity, at least not until we accept Jesus as our Savior. There is only sin, and the infection of sin that grows greater over a lifetime, making us into ever worse people if we do not get the antidote direct from our Boundlessly Loving God. But there is also within us at the beginning, the spiritual capacity to have fellowship with Him, although the only way to fulfill it is with His chosen methods and wisdom through the Door of Jesus. But these New Age people are following in the foolishly prideful path of Lucifer who tried to climb to the throne of the Most High God, thinking that he could be like the One Who is Infinitely Powerful, Majestic, and Great. But that's what pride does to you. It blinds you to your own faults and makes you think that you are greater than you actually are
More on this tomorrow. I pray that you will walk today in sweet fellowship with the One, True, Living God Who loves you more than you will ever be able to understand.