by, Cris Corzine-McCloskey

It’s my 14th birthday! Fourteen years ago, I asked Jesus into my heart. I wish I had done it sooner. All those wasted years make me sad. Sure, I had heard about Jesus, but I didn’t know the whole story. I was told about Heaven, Hell, and a rapture. Basically, I heard some scary stuff, then told Jesus was how I could avoid the scary stuff. Poor advertisement for the most beautiful gift the Universe has to offer. Now I know better. Let me tell my rescue story.

I was an addict, and now I’m healed. I was blind, and now I see. I was dead, and now I’m alive. I was hopeless, and now hope lives inside me, and it’s all because I met a man named Jesus. Seriously, folks, it cannot be stressed enough; I was a toxic, sin-encrusted, waste of a human being. Then I reached out from my pit and called on a name I had mostly used as a cuss word, and He was there. Amazingly, He never held any of that stuff against me. Instead of wrath, He handed me the free gift of a new life. What a life it has been!

Lazarus is one of my favorite characters in the Bible because we have so much in common. Lazarus was a guy Jesus raised from the dead. I’m sure no one was more surprised by that than Lazarus. I bet he told that story for the rest of his life to anyone who would listen. I can hear him sitting around telling people, “I was dead, until my friend Jesus called my name.” People probably didn’t believe him and would whisper about him behind his back. But he knew his rescue story.

Just like I know mine. I was as hollow as the Tin Man and as dead as Lazarus. Then my friend Jesus called my name. Now I’m filled to overflowing with His life, and I feel as shiny as a new penny. I am completely besotted with Him. I am a woman in love.

Had anyone ever told me it would be like this I would have been beating down the door of the closest church or Christ-centered drug rehab I could find. I kid you not.

The scary stuff I had heard did nothing to draw me to Him. It made me run the other way. It also made me think Christianity would be all about dusty hymnals, church attendance, and most of all, sin management. But that’s not the true Christian life. That’s dead religion. But doing life with the one who created laughter, joy, dogs, children, otters, and the platypus is more fun than a barrel of monkeys.

Since it’s my birthday, there needs to be music. So I’m going to share a song with you. It’s by Zach Williams, and it’s entitled, Rescue Story. The words go like this: “There I was empty-handed, Crying out from the pit of my despair. There You were in the shadows, holding out Your hand, You met me there. Where would I be without You? Where would I be Jesus? You were the voice in the desert, Calling me out in the dead of night. Fighting my battles for me, You are my rescue story. Lifted me up from the ashes, You carried my soul from death to life. Bringing me from glory to glory, You are my rescue story.”

There you have it, my rescue story. No one is more surprised by it than I am. I only wanted enough of Him to get out of trouble, yet He gave me all of this. If you don’t have a rescue story, please call out His name. Then, this time next year, we can celebrate our birthdays together!



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