The Goodness of God Led Me to Repentance
My name is Nina Gaus, and this is my story. My parents grew up in the Catholic religion. For years, they followed the traditions they were taught, but received little practical instruction from the Bible. They felt like they had no clue what life was all about. My mom was approached by some Christians during her college years that started her on a search for the truth. It wasn’t until years later that her questions were answered through a Bible study with a Christian in her workplace. She finally saw herself the way God saw her – a sinner through and through, in need of his forgiveness. When she turned from her sin to Christ, she knew that this was indeed the truth. Her burdens were lifted, and she and my Dad followed the Lord’s leading to Lehigh Valley Baptist Church, where they could begin to learn and grow from the teachings of God’s Word.
My parents were married and started a family shortly after joining the church, and my Dad gave his life to the Lord several years later. It was into this situation that I was born. I was a blank slate with no knowledge of God whatsoever.
“From early on, my parents cultivated in me a tender heart toward the things of God.”
They were convinced of these truths because it had changed their lives and answered all their questions. They didn’t want their children to have to struggle in confusion like they did. They prayed we would seek God at an early age, and have our whole lives to live for him.
I learned that God created the world, that He loved me and wanted a relationship with me, but that I was a sinner by birth…and by choice.
The Bible says in Romans 5:12: “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:”
As I grew up, I would probably be considered a “good girl” by those who met me. I was quiet and tried not to get in trouble. I learned the “right” things to do and how to make life work for me…but I lived with an unsettling feeling that I wasn’t right with God – and it concerned me.
“Becoming a teenager brought to light more of my selfish desires.”
Though I was restrained by discipline and rules, my heart was just as deceitful as anyone else’s. I realized that if I didn’t do something about my wicked heart, I would be going down the wrong path – and the God whom I had been learning about for many years was not my Savior personally.
In spite of the safe, godly, and instructive upbringing I’d been given, I had not chosen Jesus Christ for myself. I was on my way to Hell as a lost sinner…and He was in no way obligated to help me – just because my parents were Christians.
But I thank God that He continued to bring the truth before my eyes. He brought conviction of sin into my heart. I knew that God sent his son, Jesus Christ, to die for my sin on the cross of Calvary. I knew He had risen from the grave – victorious over death! And now His Holy Spirit was sent from Heaven to convict me and point me to Jesus.
There were many friends who prayed for me over the years. My pastors and parents explained from the Bible that I could never be good enough to get to Heaven on my own – that Jesus was the only way.
“They had found it to be true in their lives, but I needed to make the decision for myself.”
John 14:6 says, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
It was at a teen camp that God spoke to my heart. I had been weighed down by the burden of my sin, and the urgency of my need seemed especially strong that day…though I had felt God’s call many times over the years. I got up from the service and went into a private room. One of the camp counselors directed me to the scriptures and reminded me that God promised to save me if I turned from my sin and put my faith in Jesus Christ alone for eternal life.
Romans 10:9 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Claiming this promise, I cried out to God. I begged Him to forgive me of my sin and make me a new person inside. I knew He was my only hope of Heaven and that I needed this salvation which I had heard about for so many years. I gave my life to Christ that day and have never regretted that decision.
In the years that have followed, I have become more and more convinced that the Bible is true. I have seen more of my sinful heart revealed, and I know that if God had not saved me as a young teenager, my life would be a mess. By God’s grace, I have a desire to live by the Bible, obey God’s commands, and trust Him completely. I have experienced His peace in our uncertain world.
I am sharing my testimony with you because you don’t have to grow up in a Christian home like I did in order to be saved. God’s salvation is available for everyone! The God who created you is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
He doesn’t want you to be lost for another day. Please consider the importance of your eternity! We must all give an account to God for our lives individually. Don’t miss your opportunity to find out the truth! Seek the Lord today before it’s too late.