(Photo: Vitaly Manzuk)
If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
- 2 Corinthians 5:17
During a visit to the Pacific Northwest a few years ago, I met a man who told me he had been heavily into alcohol and drugs, and his marriage, in his own words, had been hanging by a thread. One day, he took a gun, loaded it, and was planning to kill himself. Then, he turned on the TV. There on the screen was a Harvest Crusade, where I was sharing a message called, "How to Get Right with God."
He said, "God began to speak to me. When you led those people in prayer, I prayed and asked Jesus Christ to come into my life." After he found Christ, he realized he needed to reconcile with his father. So, he rode his motorcycle across the country to see his dad. That's a long, long ride on a motorcycle. It shows me that he had really met God, and there was a change in his life.
When God healed Naaman of his leprosy, the Syrian general wanted to show his gratitude with a gift. Saul, at his conversion, said to the Lord, "What do You want me to do?" (Acts 9:6). The Philippian jailer, after becoming a believer, washed the backs of those he had previously whipped. And Zacchaeus, after he became a believer, wanted to restore what he had stolen from others.
If you have truly found a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, you will change. That doesn't mean you need to change your life before you can come to Christ. But it does mean that when you come to Christ, you will change and your priorities will change.