While standing in line to register at San Diego State University, I was approached by several people with surveys and questionnaires. One of them asked me, not for what they could sell me, but what did I call myself? I checked the box marked Christian, then realized that I needed to know more about Jesus. Another student shared the gospel with me in a way I had not heard with my church background, making me realize that my responsibility to God was direct and individual, not an automatic part of being born in the States, or going to church on Sunday. I asked Jesus to come in and take over, and make me the kind of person He wanted me to be. Immediately I felt a compassion where I had previously held a grudge. Forgiveness flowed through me as quickly as I knew I was forgiven. Patience replaced restlessness.
All was not so easy, however. My mediocre grades became polarized. My C's became A's and Incompletes! I spent long hours helping computerize our outreach effort involving 180 contributing students in a dozen specific ministry efforts during 1980. I spent hours memorizing the Bible, then let some of my studies lapse, while getting A's in others. Somehow, I had come to saving faith, but had not found balance. Some teaching going around made me think it was wrong to be affluent, for example. Since good grades could be a form of affluence, it was even said (of those whose weren't so hot), "Oh well, they're gonna burn anyway." What a wrong attitude!
When my old '72 Pinto broke down, my boss let me have his Mercedes 450SL for a couple of months, rather than take my time away from work to fix my car! Things eventually got so rough for our struggling company that in addition to selling his house, my boss had to sell that car, too. Eventually, though, in spite of my prayers for God to take away the company so I could pursue "full time Christian work," God prospered our efforts. I remember a telephone prayer request while I was in New York to friends in San Diego being miraculously answered, impressing a man who became a very key employee. Eventually our company merged with a larger company, giving me the equivalent of 25 years salary in one transaction! The decisions I faced caused me to question my "gonna burn" attitude. Together with the earlier counsel of some staff at Campus Crusade for Christ headquarters, they made me realize that wealth is nothing more and nothing less than another commodity, another tool which may be used by those ignorant of God, or, if properly spent, to bring Him glory.
I have found the scripture to be relevant in every area of life, and have committed myself to the cause of Christian Reconstruction of this country. I believe that the Gospel regenerates first, man's heart, then, anything in which regenerate man is involved. No government, education, or other institution is a lost cause that is not reached by the saving power of Christ. He has not called us to abandon our possessions, but to submit them to the authority of God rather than to man. Let us look to His word and see what He would have each of us do with what He has entrusted to us! First, our own souls and lives, then, our community, our country, and the world!