This is a continuation of our series on “Stories of Hope” featuring friends, some of whom are sisters, mothers, grandmothers, and their experience with Hope. In this post, Bernice Hobbet shares her experience of hope and love in her journey with Jesus. I pray her story encourages you to invite Jesus into your life if you haven’t already or draw closer to him.
A few days before my third birthday my father died. I was raised by my wonderful mother. We were religious. We always went to church, and we believed in God and Jesus. We prayed and hoped we would go to heaven but feared we might not because it was unknown just how good was good enough. To think you might make it was conceit enough to keep you out.
Yet you hoped.
I grew up, married and had four children. In 1969 we moved from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Durham, North Carolina. A few months later my husband left our family. I don’t recall how I heard of Cresset Church, but I found it in the early 70s. At Cresset everyone loved me. Why? Because they loved Jesus! It was here that salvation became real because Jesus had already died, suffered and paid for my sins.
I am saved! Not because of me but because of Jesus.
No one had explained this to me–at least not in a way I could understand. Now to me, it is a terrible wrenching thought that someone might not understand so I pray for opportunities to meet new people who I can share the gospel with, either to tell them about Christ and salvation or to fellowship with believers. To think I might have missed salvation through lack of Knowledge pushes me to tell others.
We are God’s missionaries wherever we are.
A Life of Love: Community and Happy Hearts
The Bible, prayer, and our church are my foundation as they are for my church family- sisters and brothers who are joy support, understanding, encouragement examples and love to one another and to me. They are kind, faithful, forgiving, witty, full of fun, and good humor. Happy hearts are a hallmark of Christians!
Knowing Christian friends are forever, provides a deep awareness of permanency and happiness in my love for them. There is a sorrow in my love for unbelieving friends for I know their destiny, so I yearn and pray for their change of heart.
Books have been a big help to me. Sound Christian authors like J I Parker, John piper, Francis Schaeffer, CS Lewis, and many others are informative, motivating, and expand my enthusiasm and insight into scriptures.
Lessons, Questions and Doubts
At one time I questioned and doubted. Through faithful, caring people, our prayers, reading and seeking. God gave me answers. I learned to be open with my needs, questions, problems, and burdens, with Christian friends and to be open to listen and receive help.
It is a two-way blessing.
I learned God allows rough times for a reason and he is the one who smooths them out. I learned to dare to talk about faith and salvation when doubtful how it will be received, but if I don’t do it who will?
From familiar passages, I learned the Holy Spirit often reveals a new understanding showing me I always need to be reading and rereading the Bible. I learned that to believe or not to believe is a decision we all make — either directly or by default. It is not faith without facts. Supporting facts and history are abundant.
Over the years I have learned many things, but what remains to learn is endless. One of the main lessons I learned is that the wonders and wisdom of the world are hidden in the Bible. Hidden only if we let them be. If we don’t live what we learn from the Bible, it is still hidden.
A life of Love: Looking Ahead…
Life on earth soon ends. I look forward to being with our Triune God and live the wonderful eternal life he has promised and prepared. At the same time, I am reluctant to leave my beloved family and friends here. Then I remind myself- it is only the very few years between my death and theirs that we will be apart.
We have eternity! We are promised joy and peace there. That promise gives joy and peace now!
Do you desire a happy heart? Have you heard about Jesus? He cares about you and wants to offer you salvation and abundant life even if you feel like the worst sinner. He loves you unconditionally. Invite him into your life today. A life of love and hope is only found in Jesus!
Further Encouragement: For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:17 NIV
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 NIV
In an acceptable time, I have heard you. And in the day of salvation, I have helped you. Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. 2 Corinthians 6:2, NKJV
Ms. Bernice Hobbet is a special woman who is loved by everyone. She loves Jesus and her family. She is a member of the JOY Class at LifeSpring Church in Durham. She looks for opportunities to share the love of Jesus with others.