“It does not matter what you have done in your life, God loves you. If you will repent and put your faith in Jesus, God will forgive your sins and give you fullness of life.” We often boldly proclaim such truth to unbelievers whom God is drawing to Himself and it is right to do so. Unfortunately, Christians often do not realize that God’s grace extends to all people including believers who have sinned. As followers of Jesus, it is natural to desire to be like Him. We can use many terms to describe this such as holiness, righteousness and sanctification, yet “loving” is the best term to use. Jesus summarized the commandments of the Old Testament as loving God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and loving our neighbors as ourselves. The bottom line is that God’s law is simply the law of love. God’s word defines what love is, and it is an expression of His very character and nature. Therefore it is not loving to steal, commit adultery or bear false testimony. It is loving to do good to those who do us evil and by doing so, we demonstrate that we are children of God. These few examples demonstrate practically what holiness and righteousness is. They describe how we are called to live.
Unfortunately, even as Christians, we fall short of this standard. We often sin. When we do, we may feel like we deserve punishment. Sin often brings a lot of suffering with it, and because such suffering is a result of our bad choices, we may feel like God will not restore us. What we need to realize that Jesus is still our savior. When we have fallen into sin, the only way out is to turn to God and humbly receive His forgiveness. God’s salvation is so complete, that when we return to Him, He heals our broken lives and restores us to a place of blessing.
Dave Amstutz’s testimony is living proof of the power of God’s grace. Anyone who knows him knows how much he loves God and loves others. All of the love that he walks in is a result of experiencing God’s grace and forgiveness personally.
While he was a professing Christian, Dave gave up and walked out on God and his family. He boldly turned to a life of sin and self-abuse. Through a series of miracles, God restored him to faith and began restoring his life. Yet, Dave wrestled with whether he had lost the calling on his life that he had experienced so many years earlier. At one Life Springs Sunday service, visiting minister Prophet Eric invited people to the altar for ministry. Dave was afraid to go because he was terrified that God might publicly humiliate him concerning of all of his sins. While waiting for prayer he heard the voice of the Holy Spirit tell him, “I didn’t bring you here to embarrass or humiliate you, but to plant you and finish what I began.” This gave him the courage to receive ministry from Prophet Eric. Eric knew nothing of Dave’s life, but gave him the following word: “Through a series of bad choices you lost everything, but God is going to recover it all…Don’t you say you are not a minister, you are a minister flying under the radar.” From that day God began to restore everything that Dave lost, and eventually he was ordained a pastor at Life Springs Church.
Through Dave’s story we see many truths of scripture expressed in real life. Scripture tells us that God’s gifts and callings are irrevocable. He knows every mistake we will make before we ever make it. God’s call to ministry in Dave’s life carried with it the power to fulfill God’s purposes in his life. Scripture also teaches us that whoever is forgiven much will also love much. Dave is living proof that this is true. Yet, for many people, what we really need to grasp is how much God loves us. He has provided atonement for our sin. It does not matter what we have done, we need to return to God and He will forgive us and heal our lives.