I came to Jesus in my youth

I was still young, not many years old, when my mother gave her life to Jesus. When my mother believed, the spiritual matters came close to me also.

I went to meetings, camps, and Sunday school of the church with my mother. I heard a lot about Jesus and the Bible, and at the same time, God did his work in my heart. It is easier to receive Jesus as a child. Jesus says in the Bible: "Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God" and: "Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein" (Mark 10:14-15)

The Bible speaks about the day and the time of visitation. It is the time when God draws a man to Him. I got the day of visitation in childhood by the grace of God. God spoke to me by preaching the gospel, personal testimonies, and spiritual songs.

Thanks to God that I received His calling and that the day of visitation ended so that I believed. This happened at a camp of the church in the evening meeting. We sang spiritual songs and certainly read the Bible. There was also a possibility to pray on knees beside a bench. I encouraged myself, knelt in prayer, and said something like "I would also like to believe". I was prayed for as songs were sung in the background. The Lord Jesus noticed my understanding and longing and answered me. After praying, I had a certainty that now I am a believer. The Spirit bore witness in me that I was a child of God (Rom. 8:16). Later, I understood that I was born again at that moment.

After I believed, I understood that God's will, according to the Bible, is that I let myself be baptized. (Mark 16:16, Acts 22:16). I contacted the elders of the church, and we discussed. I had become a believer, repented, and I had sufficient understanding, so there was nothing that would have hindered me from being baptized. And so I was baptized one winter, on the threshold of my youth, and I became a member of the Tampereen Paikallisseurakunta.

According to the Bible, baptism is one of the first steps in the life of a believer. It is a step after which one walks as a follower of Jesus with the Lord and other believers. I have also been allowed to walk on this way for some years. The Lord has taken care of me and has given me significance, joy, and interest in my life. I read the Bible eagerly, pray, and participate in meetings and events of the church, and carry forth the good message about Jesus.

The life of a believer consists of walking in obedience to the Bible. In various situations and questions in my life, I have chosen what God, in His word, guides me to either do or to refrain from. As a follower of Jesus, I have been protected from many choices and tries that break life and which are usually done in youth. It has been safe to walk with Him. "He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust" (Ps. 91:4).

I have also received guidance and help in life situations from God. The past years have included, among other things, questions about studying and work-related matters for which I have prayed to Jesus with the church. "Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you" (1. Pet. 5:7). I have experienced that also this Bible verse is true. The Lord has taken care of me by helping me in my studies and guiding me in work-related matters. One after another the intercessions have changed to thanksgivings to God. I have seen that God has the power to open doors of his own will (Rev. 3:7). Also, in this way my confidence in Jesus has grown.

I understand that it is not insignificant whether I live my short and only life with Jesus or without Him. According to the Bible, everyone will account to God of one's life and choices after this life.

In His love, God desires a man as His own in youth (Eccl. 12:1). A man will build his life complicated without the good way of God (Eccl. 7:30). If Jesus calls you, receive Him and give Him your life; you don't have to once realize that your life passed and nothing remained. God has a good plan for everyone's life. I myself want to make my journey on the way of a believer, which is guided by the Bible, to receive abundant life from the Father and to enter once in through the gates of Heaven.

Iisakki Heiskari