“So where did you two first meet? Tell me your whole love story . . .” I so enjoy asking other women all about how they met their husbands or boyfriends. A small smile usually appears as the corners of their lips gradually turn up. They start to share the details and a starry gaze often appears in their eyes. If the man in their life is sitting there listening, he likes to throw in his side of the story usually with laughter and a little bit of male pride. It is always fun to reminisce about the love story in our lives. Isn’t it?
Maybe your answer is No, I don’t have that kind of love in my life. How about the people in your life that you truly love? Perhaps it’s a friendship or even the first day you laid eyes on your newborn. No matter what relationships we have, there is one relationship that tops them all, and today I’d like to ask you to think back to the time when you first remember meeting Jesus. Was it in a Sunday school class when you were a child? In the high school hallway before school when a Christian told you about Him? Maybe in a park? Perhaps while you watched a television show that talked about Him or in your front yard as your neighbor shared the incredible gospel of Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross for you.
As you read this, you might be asking yourself, Have I ever really met Him? I’m not talking about just hearing about Him, I’m talking about personally meeting Him. Let me tell you, when you meet Him it is like no other introduction you will ever encounter. I can remember the exact spot. It was in Mobile, Alabama, and I was five-and-a-half years old. The summer heat of the South was in full swing outside, but inside my grandmother’s spotless house, the air conditioner was keeping things wonderfully cool.
As I walked into the bedroom where my mother was, I heard her singing a song to Jesus. “Mom you act like you really know Him,” I stated and inquired at the same time. You see I had been attending church for at least five years. I had seen my Sunday school teacher talk about Jesus as she placed a thin paper picture of Him that somehow miraculously stayed on a flannel board. I had sung songs that declared that Jesus loved me and apparently all the different colored children of the world too (but I must admit I was puzzled by children being yellow and red when they all seemed skin-colored to me).
What I had never done, though, was actually encounter this man they were talking about. My mother made the introduction as I kneeled, my knees touching the cool hardwood floor. My childlike, pudgy elbows rested on the bleached-white, textured bedspread while my little palms faced upward. My young neck allowed my chin to touch the top of my chest. Right then and there I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior for life, and (I kid you not) all of these years later, I can remember standing up and knowing that I was a different person than I was before I had knelt.
Jesus has that effect on the human spirit. What had I done as a five-year-old that needed changing? Stealing candy and hitting my sister don’t seem like too big of deal, but it was the condition of my heart that needed changing (John 3:16). I had not been “born again” (John 3:1-8). I had not yet surrendered my ways to His ways. When you meet Him you truly will never be the same again. You enter a place of freedom and peace.
He has always been changing hearts. Remember the Samaritan woman in the Bible? In John 4 this woman who is by the well meets Jesus for the very first time. Not only does He tell her that He is the living water that she needs for her soul, but He also tells her that He knows every little detail about her life—the good, the bad, and the ugly. Even though she was a sinner like all of us, He reached out to her and invited her to follow Him to become His daughter.
Can you hear Him today calling your name? He knows you. He loves you. He has a beautiful love story waiting for you. For those of you that know Him personally, I encourage you today to stop and reminisce with Him about when you first met. I know that it will make BOTH of you smile.