I think it was in 1960 when Mrs. White (I don’t recall her first name) sat down with me and explained the Wordless Book.
That book had no text. It was simply a book with pages of different colors.
The first page was black. Mrs. White said that darkness represented the result of sin. In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve sinned by eating the forbidden fruit. That separated them from fellowship with God.
Each of us now has to deal with the problem of sin.
The next page was red. Mrs. White said that represented the blood of Jesus Christ. God loved us so much that He sent His only Son to Earth to be born as a baby so that some day – after living a perfect life – Jesus could volunteer to die on the cross to save people of their sin.
The next page was white. Mrs. White (this was probably her favorite page) said this the heart of anyone who believes in Jesus and trusts in Him. By accepting Jesus, your heart can be white as snow. Even though we still struggle with our sin nature, a Christian is a child of God and joint-heir with Jesus.
The last page was gold. Mrs. White said that page represented the streets of gold in Heaven. If you accept Jesus, God will bring you into Heaven when you die. It is a glorious place. Nothing on Earth can compare. And the best part is that fellowship that was lost in the Garden of Eden will be restored.
Even though I was only 6 years old, Mrs. White explained things so well that I asked her if I could accept Jesus right then. We prayed together and that became the most important event in my life.
Before then, I knew of Hell and I knew I didn’t want to go there. I knew that I was disobedient sometimes. And I was curious about Heaven.
Later, I was baptized in Tulsa Bible Church. I think I was 10.
When I was in high school, Bud Pederson (now a missionary to India) was the summer youth director at our church. Bud was a student at Dallas Theological Seminary. He was smart and he wanted to help the young men under his care to grow in their faith.
He challenged me. Was I just going to play around with Christianity or was I going to be serious? I hesitated. In the back of my mind, I was resisting. I felt that strict adherence to the Christian life was too much work and no fun. Every time I went to a missionary conference, I worried that somehow God was going to make me go overseas and be a missionary in Africa. Or even worse, I worried God would make me be a preacher. They never seemed to have any fun.
When I went away to college, I was burdened with Bud’s challenge. I knew that I was a believer but there were parts of my life and conduct that I made off limits to God.
God’s Holy Spirit was tugging at my heartstrings.
My roommate at college was going through the exact same struggle. We started going to Vesper services at the Baptist Student Union on the Oklahoma University.
I realized that Christians can have fun. Lots of fun. Good, clean fun.
When I went home for the Christmas break, I apologized to my Dad. He had told me that I had “a chip on my shoulder” and he was right. I had a bad attitude and that began to change as I started to realize all the sacrifices he made to keep our family together and to raise my brothers and me.
I am a work in progress. God truly is not finished with me yet. I wish I could say that I have arrived but I have not.
But this is true. God does exist. He is both loving and righteous. He sent Jesus to save people but He will not let unrepentant sinners into Heaven. He just won’t.
It’s not hard to be reconciled to God through Jesus. Tulsa is a wonderful city when it comes to getting sound Biblical counsel and encouragement.
Please don’t let Christmas be just about gifts, office parties or shows. It is the best time to consider who Jesus is and how He wants to have a personal relationship with you.
I am glad Mrs. White shared the Wordless Book with me. I am glad I didn’t stop at the black page but kept going until I reached that wonderful gold page.
The promise of eternal life can begin right now.