My name is April Warner and here is my story of God’s grace in my life…
My Salvation Story
I was raised in a non-Christian home. I lived with my mother, step dad and 3 siblings. My parents did not attend church, but for some reason my mother decided that her kids should go to church. She arranged for a family to take us every Sunday. I remember as a young child wondering why it was so important for us to go to church but not our parents. I personally felt like it was a way for them to get rid of us for a few hours. Needless to say I went to church with a family who faithfully picked my sister and I up for many years.
I remember going to Sunday school and to vacation bible school and learning all the stories of the bible, and hearing missionary stories. I remember our pastor at the end of each vacation bible study story he would tell us how we could come to know Jesus and have him be our savior. He would invite us to stay and pray with him to ask Jesus to be our savior. I remember how he told us about sin and going to hell, and how knowing Jesus would change all that. I knew then I did not want to go to hell so of course I prayed and asked Jesus to be my savior.
Well over the years I began to learn more and more about who God was and about sin. I began to really understand what it meant to be a sinner and I began to understand the depth of my sin. Romans 3:23 says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. I understood that God gave the ultimate sacrifice by sending his son to die in my place for my sin. Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
I started looking at my life a little closer, and realized that I was truly lost. I knew that I had prayed that prayer and for the longest time I believed that I was saved. People would ask me if I was saved and I would say “well I go to church”. Somehow I believed that going to church was all I needed to be a Christian. But when I began to look at my life and the sin I was living in I knew in my heart that I was not saved. I hadn’t turned away from my sin. 2 Chronicles 7:14 says if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.I never really understood what being a Christian really was, because I did not have it modeled for me at home.
It wasn’t until I was a teen that I truly began to understand and realize how lost I was and for the first time I understood my need for a savior. I needed Jesus to be my bridge so I could come to God. John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. One night all alone in my bedroom I knelt by my bed and began to pray. I wept as I prayed asking God to forgive me of my sin and to cleanse me. Psalm 51:2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! I knew then and only then that I was truly saved. It was then that God began to transform my life. I didn’t desire the sinful things any longer. I even began to enjoy going to church where before it was a chore, and I had decided that I would quit when I turned 16. God had other plans for my life, and looking back I can see how he was at work in every detail of my life. God is good and he promises that he will complete the work that he began in me. Philippians 1:6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.