Is There Really a Heaven?

I’m really concerned, y’all. Really concerned.

Before I go into my rant/inspirational moment, I’d like to give you my background.

Hi, my name is Regina Patterson. I’m a bible toting, Christian who is in no way, form or fashion ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

What does that mean? This means that I believe the ENTIRE Bible. There is not one word in the Holy Bible that I choose not to believe. While I believe I have the choice to believe what I want, I believe that once I chose Jesus, I chose to believe all that He put forth before us. That’s why I DO NOT change the Bible or my faith for what makes me feel good or what I think is right. Everything in life ain’t about rainbows and butterflies. This life is real and the stuff we go through is real. My faith has gotten me through a lot, including the depression that I’ve gone through for years. It’s helped me understand how I can be used by Christ and how in the midst of pain, He still has my back; that he can comfort me when the devil tries to get me down. That He is there for me when I don’t know what to do. That He is so much, I don’t even have words. “If I had ten thousand tongues…”

What else does it mean? It means that I believe that there is a heaven and a hell. I don’t believe in purgatory. And I believe you have to accept Christ to make it into heaven. Key verses that makes this real in my heart:

John 3:16: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whoever believes in Him will not perish (die), but have everlasting life.

John 14:6: Jesus answered, “am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. – NIV, biblegateway.com

John 3:16 is something that I have learned since childhood, but it has not had as much meaning to me until now as I’m writing this post. This means that there was a God who loved me so much that He literally came down from heaven, cloaked himself in human flesh, all for the purpose of dying for me. He was the last sacrifice, meaning no other animal had to be killed for the atonement of my sins. He did it so we could stop crucifying bulls and cows and so on. It was the blood of animals that once was sacrificed for the atonement (or cleansing, forgiveness) of our sins, but Jesus came down and said “enough.” He literally laid down his life, his pride, his ego, his Kinghood…all to die for me. So how in the world can I cheapen what He did for me simple on the account of I don’t like how I was treated in the past or I don’t like what they do at church or fill in the blank. It ain’t about them. You make the difference. Don’t run. Do it how God wanted it to be done. You be the example. That was, and still is, my decision.

What does it not mean? Being a Christian doesn’t mean that I’m perfect. I do not get it right. I can be legalistic, which means I can try to work my way to salvation. I can be judgmental, meaning that I look down on people at times. It means that I’m still working out my salvation, as the Bible says, which means there are times when I still sin.

What else does it not mean? It doesn’t mean that I hate homosexuals. It doesn’t mean that I’m mean in the name of Christ. It doesn’t mean that I’m not a democrat. And it doesn’t mean that I’m a pushover.

Why did I feel compelled to write this?

There are a ton of impressionable minds out there – Some who have been hurt by the church. Others who are trying to decide what they believe…many within my generation and some older, many younger. And there are a ton of people making impressions on these minds. And I’m scared for these people. I’m scared that they won’t be able to experience the glory of God because there are so many false prophets/prophesies (proclamations) sculpting their beliefs.

I’m seeing and have been bothered by the fact that it’s no longer okay to stand firm in the Christian faith. Instead, I see so many saying they believe in Jesus, but then not taking the Bible in its totality. That’s scary because that is exactly what will make people comfortable on earth and send them to a burning hell all at the same time.

I’m sorry to have to preach fire and brimstone. I hated it when I was growing up, but hell is real… and living a comfortable life, accepting whatever you want on earth is what will send you to a place of eternal damnation. I’m not okay knowing that my friends will end up there if they don’t accept the truth, but I also can’t change it. That’s a personal choice.

I wish they could see Jesus as I do and accept him as I do, because hell is real and so is Heaven…and we have everything we need right here to get us to either place. The gift is 100% free. We just have to accept it.

Yes. Many of us have been church hurt; myself included. I’ve been scared of God. I’ve had people try to pray my depression away, and while they had good intentions, it did more hurt than harm. And frankly there are times when my mother and I can’t even talk about spiritual things because we have different convictions within the same Christian faith.

But guess what…in the end we both believe in the same Jesus, and we both believe in the fundamentals on how to get to heaven.

I’m scared y’all. I’m really concerned. I call America a modern-day Sodom and Gomorrah. Read the story. Boasting of sexual immorality; prostitution, lust, open fornication, and homosexuality.

Some of y’all may say, “Gina is crazy.” I really don’t care. Truth is truth..and if history repeats itself, “welcome back Sodom and Gomorrah.”

Like I said, I’m not perfect, I have my own set of sins, but that’s no excuse for being quiet. That was the whole point of His death; to free us from our life of sins. To wash us white as snow.That’s why I can’t get down with it…even my own set of sins. I have my own set of things I get convicted about…and that’s why I’m so happy for grace. But it’s hard to understand grace if you don’t even understand Jesus.

Anyhoo, I say all this to say please, I beg of you, stop letting people and past experiences get in your way of knowing a real, loving God. I’m not going to lie to you; He is fair, just like any parent is to any child. He doesn’t choose heaven or hell for you. He gives you the choice. It’s based on what you choose to believe.

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