After losing her husband, a woman learns she can talk to God 24/7.
Whether it’s morning, evening, or sometime in-between, you may be able to find Barbara Sharp doing one of the things she loves most: praying to God. “He’s the first person I talk to when I wake up and the last person I talk to before I go to bed,” she says.
For much of her life, this open communication with God didn’t exist. In fact, Sharp spent many years filled with dread just at the thought of obeying God. After losing her husband, however, Sharp learned of God’s grace for sinners and his willingness to hear and answer prayers.
A FOCUS ON WORKS
As a child, Sharp attended a Pentecostal church with her parents. During her early years, she didn’t even know that the Lutheran church existed. “I was a kid, and you go where your parents take you,” she explains.
Even though she went to church, Sharp didn’t find a lot of comfort in religion. “I was always told we’d probably go to hell because we couldn’t live according to the Ten Commandments,” she says. “When that’s pounded in your head since the age of seven, that’s what you believe.”
With the focus on doing good to be saved, Sharp didn’t feel a deep connection to the churches she attended or the preachers with whom she came into contact. During the services, “there was such guilt and yelling and screaming,” she says. “You don’t know what’s going on—you just know you’re doomed.”
The teachings she listened to, which encouraged living a certain way to work your way into heaven, left Sharp with a sense of helplessness. “Whatever I did, I felt it didn’t matter because I’m not good enough—I’m not going to make it anyway.”Read More
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