God has a specific will for you. There are some facets of God’s plan that are true for all people everywhere past, present, and future. You do not have peace with God because we are separated from Him if you have not repented of your sins and trusted Him for your salvation. The sins you have committed ruin that potential for relationship with God. There is nothing that you can do to fix this separation on your own because God’s standard is perfection. “All of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.” (Romans 3:23). You ruin the chance for perfection if you have sinned even one time no matter the “big” or “small” value you place on your sin. God took the initiative and paid the penalty of sin for you because you had no hope of doing it on your own. “Christ carried the burden of our sins. He was nailed to the cross, so that we would stop sinning and start living right. By his cuts and bruises you are healed.” (1 Peter 2:24). God sacrificed Himself in the person of Jesus Christ simply because He loves you that much. “God loved the people of this world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will have eternal life and never really die.” (John 3:16). Your part is so simple that church tradition as spent thousands of years complicating it. All you have to do is receive the pardon that Jesus died to purchase for you to restore that relationship with God. Then you become a child of God. There is a misconception floating around that all people are God’s children. That is not true. “Yet some people accepted him and put their faith in him. So he gave them the right to be the children of God. (John 1:12). You are God’s creature, but you are not His child until you are saved. Romans 10:9-13 lays out the process by which you can receive God’s gift of salvation. “So you will be saved, if you honestly say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and if you believe with all your heart that God raised him from death. God will accept you and save you, if you truly believe this and tell it to others. The Scriptures say that no one who has faith will be disappointed, no matter if that person is a Jew or a Gentile. There is only one Lord, and he is generous to everyone who asks for his help. All who call out to the Lord will be saved.” Put all this together and the process of salvation is to admit your need for God because you are a sinner, repent by turning away from your sins and toward God, believing that Jesus Christ died for you on the cross, and receiving that gift for yourself. The invitation to become God’s child is open to all. Jesus said, “Listen! I am standing and knocking at your door. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in and we will eat together.” (Revelation 3:20).
The Bible says you are saved if you repent of your sins and trust Christ’s sacrifice on the cross as payment for all of your sins. Jesus’ sacrifice is the only acceptable payment for those sins. There is no other road that leads to God. “ I am the gate. All who come in through me will be saved. Through me they will come and go and find pasture” (John 10:9). Acts 4:12 says, “Only Jesus has the power to save! His name is the only one in all the world that can save anyone.” You are a child of God if you receive Him. You can be assured that you have life forever and are God’s child if you believe in Christ. God’s Word is the basis of the assurance of your salvation. You cannot trust your feelings. Feelings come and go. Trust what God says. God knows your heart. So you are saved and have eternal life if you have genuinely repented of your sins and trusted Christ to forgive your sins.
There are things a Christian does when God saves you out of thankfulness to Him. The good works you do are in vain if you do them to try to earn your salvation or keep your salvation as if your faith in Christ were simply some kind of down payment. You do good works because of what God has already done for you. Perhaps the best thing you can do after you receive Christ to share the gift you have received with others and offer the same gift to them. Jesus said, “If you tell others that you belong to me, I will tell my Father in heaven that you are my followers. But if you reject me, I will tell my Father in heaven that you don’t belong to me” (John 10:32-33). Communicating with God is another way we can develop our relationship God. Any relationship without communication is not a true relationship. The primary way God communicates with you is through His perfect Word, the Bible. Jesus said, “No one can live only on food. People need every word that God has spoken” (Matthew 4:4). The primary way we communicate with God is through prayer. Jesus said, “Stay joined to me and let my teachings become part of you. Then you can pray for whatever you want, and your prayer will be answered” (John 15:7). God will communicate back to you if you stay in His presence long enough. God will speak through other Christians as the Holy Spirit leads them. A word of caution is necessary here though. Make sure what another Christian tells you matches up with what God’s Word says. Disregard the advice otherwise.
If you are a Christian but find that you are far from Him because you have sinned, the road back is just as simple as the road to salvation. “If we confess our sins to God, he can always be trusted to forgive us and take our sins away.” (1 John 1:9). To confess means to agree with God that a particular, specific sin is wrong and admitting that you did it. So if you examine yourself and find sin in your life that you have not confessed yet, do not waste time. Confess and repent right away. “If you don’t confess your sins, you will be a failure. But God will be merciful if you confess your sins and give them up.” (Proverbs 28:13). Make things right not just with God but with anyone that you have sinned against as well. “I try my best to have a clear conscience in whatever I do for God or for people.” (Acts 24:16). That is what Zacchaeus did when he decided to follow Jesus. “I will give half of my property to the poor. And I will now pay back four times as much[a] to everyone I have ever cheated” (Luke 19:8). Righting things with God and other people you have sinned against will restore your relationship with God, get you back in fellowship with Him, and back on the narrow path to life on which Jesus called us to live.
NOTE: All Scripture quotations come from the Contemporary English Version (CEV)