Even the Preacher’s Kid Needs to Be Born Again!
My name is Roland Hammett, and this is my story. I was born into the Hammett family on August 8, 1976, in the little town of Craig, Colorado. My dad pastored a Baptist church there, and right from the start, I was faithful in church attendance! My parents were always at church, and, of course, I went along with them. Incidentally, I was a well-behaved kid because my dad and mom made sure that I did right. Of course, I had my times of disobedience and rebellion, but I never really did anything too bad, because I was afraid of being punished by my dad.
“As a child, it was very hard for me to see myself as a sinner in God’s eyes.”
I knew all about Jesus and His death on the cross. I knew that sin would cause God to send a man or woman to Hell. Quite frankly, I was afraid of Hell, and I had prayed a little prayer when I was six years of age, believing that would get me into Heaven, even though I really did not understand the truths of salvation at that point. (Note: salvation, saved and born again are Biblical terms referring to the forgiveness of sins by God and the rescue of a person from the power and penalty of that sin. This is God’s requirement for everlasting life.) I was even baptized after I professed to know God.
I did all the right things, and I served more in the church before I was 10 years old than some people do in their entire lives. The problem was that I had never taken care of my sin the way that God demands for sin to be taken care of. You see, it is not enough to know all of the facts about Jesus, to be able to quote Bible verses, to serve in the church and to do lot of good things. God only accepts those who have taken care of their sin the way that God requires in His Word! When I was about eight years old, these things started to sink in.
“I began to realize that, even though I was a pretty good kid, I was not right in the eyes of God.”
One night, I went to a church meeting in Washburn, Illinois, with my family. My dad was preaching a special service that night, and he preached on the very subject that was bothering me. That night as the service progressed, I began to see that even though I had prayed a little prayer to God so that I would not have to go to Hell, I was not truly saved. I was still condemned in God’s eyes. The problem was that I had never repented of my sins. God’s Word tells us that God commands all men to repent of their sin. I needed to see myself as God saw me – a dirty, filthy sinner who deserved eternal judgment. It was not that I had done anything that was terrible – humanly speaking. However, just one rebellion or one disobedience was enough to make me worthy of judgment as a sinner in God’s eyes.
“The other truth I saw that night was that the worst thing that I could do was to reject Christ.”
I knew that Christ had died for the sin of mankind, but I had never made that personal connection between Christ’s death and my sin. That night I decided that I had put Christ off for long enough. I went to my dad and told him that I needed to be saved. He and I talked after the service, and we looked at some Bible verses. Right there, in that church building, I bowed my head and asked God for forgiveness. I accepted the wonderful gift of God as the only hope that I had. That was the most memorable night of my life.
I can never forget what happened to me in that little church. In fact, my life has been very different since that time. I thank God that He has spared me from the sin that I could have gotten into, had I not been saved. That is not to say that I do not still do wrong things, but I have a new heart – a heart that makes me want to please God with my life.
“A relationship with God is the most important relationship that you can have in your life.”
If you are looking for true meaning in life, then you need to look to God. Stop trying to fill that emptiness inside with human relationships, material goods, fun times, and religion. Nothing can take the place in your life that God wishes to fill. Even people who are religious and good need to come to God in His way. Doing it your own way or ignoring eternity will never get you to Heaven. It is His Heaven, and you have to come in His way.
I am so thankful that I have established a relationship with God. I hope that you too will consider how you stand with God. God is very real, and His way of living is much better than any other way. If you are not sure how you stand with God, please ask for help. I would love to explain God’s Word to you personally so that you can know for sure how you stand with Him.