“I just don’t know when I’m going to get saved!” I met this young woman at an office Bible study. Was she procrastinating? Resisting? Or did she just need assurance? Before I could offer my wisdom, I sensed Father saying, “Wait. She needs to be sure. She needs to hear it from me.”
In our eagerness to usher everyone into the kingdom, we well-meaning evangelicals have discounted the once essential experience of salvation. Confident that God has already done his part, we now focus entirely on ours. We urge people to make a decision, or accept Christ, or, if we are very careless with words, to get saved.
My friend felt like she was adrift, her ship sunk, desperate for rescue. Admonitions to get saved, or assurances that she is already saved, are little comfort to a drowning girl. She needed to see her rescuer, to feel a strong hand grasp hers, to know that her feet were on solid ground.
It is the savior who assures our hearts of rescue. We must not offer a shortcut. Human assurances of salvation, even those backed with convincing Bible verses, will not withstand the fiery trials. But when we have waited for God to rescue and allowed him to assure, doubts dissolve and our foothold on the rock is sure.
One Monday morning, I saw my friend in the hall. God had met her at church. She was saved. Her face was bright, her eyes wide with wonder. “When I look out the window, the trees and the grass look different! Everything seems new to me.” She had waited on the Lord, and he heard her cry, and answered her.