What makes someone a Christian?
Going to church doesn’t make a person a Christian. A special ceremony can't do it. And nobody can be a Christian by trying to be a good person. Only Jesus Christ can make a person a Christian.
Some people find it difficult to believe just how simple it is to become a Christian. Christians are just normal people who get things wrong like everyone else, but a Christian is a person who has come to realise that there is something missing and that the only person able to help is God himself, in human form: Jesus.
There is nothing we can do to earn God’s love – he has always loved us and always will. There is nothing we can do to earn God’s forgiveness and a new life - we could never do enough. It’s already been bought for us anyway – at a high price: the sacrifice on the cross of God’s only son, Jesus. This forgiveness and new life came at a great price but comes free to us, from God; all we can do is accept it gratefully, make it count in our daily life and meet God’s huge love for us with as much of our love as we can.
Some people worry that before you can become a Christian, you need to clean up your life, give up certain habits, give money, give time, come to a better understanding of the Bible, or perform acts of service. But none of these things will make you a Christian. Jesus meets you as you are. He stands waiting at the door of your life, gently knocking and when you open the door he ushers you back into your Heavenly Father’s arms, no questions asked. And Jesus knows what life is like: he got angry, cried, was hungry, had friends and family he loved, suffered pain, and so he understands us and we can always turn to him, whatever's going on in our lives.
Once you know your need of God you will start to experience his love in your life. Once you start to experience his love you will want to start making changes that please him and that help others.
To become a Christian, simply tell God, in prayer, that you choose to place your faith in Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness for all that you have got wrong and you choose a new life with him. Tell God that you want Him to be in charge of your life from this point forward. You could use this prayer:
God, I want to be forgiven for my sin. I want to know You. I place my faith in Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness of sin and new life. I want Jesus to come into my life and make me new. I want You to direct my life from this point forward. Thank you for forgiving me. Please open my eyes to understand this new life. Amen.
If you have prayed this prayer, come and share your decision with others. Check out the churches near you and get in touch. It’s great to be part of God’s family.