“When I recall first becoming a Christian in my early twenties (although I was raised as a Christian, and went to church most Sundays, I never was in the biblical sense a Christian as I was not born again, and didn’t really know Jesus Christ as my personal Savior), one huge concern of mine was in respect to making any kind of commitment to God because ever since I was a child I heard and learned that Christians must suffer their way up to Heaven. I was told that I could not have any fun in life if I wanted to get to Heaven and in order for me to become an active member of that elite religiously bound group I would have to start towing the line by practicing strict mandates. I was told that mischievous behavior would sequester one to total damnation.
So hopelessly, I tried but failed, learning that this kind of life was actually an impossibility to practice successfully (Acts 15:10, Romans 10:3, Galatians 2:16, and Ephesians 2:8–9). It became apparent to me that I was going to hell and I had reasoned that I did not want any part of a life which meant suffering for the baby Jesus, and I rationalized that my getting saved apparently was an unachievable endeavor anyway. After all, I did not even know who Jesus was or where he was, all I ever heard (and feared) was that God’s Word was a thou shalt NOT have – type of restraining Bible, and boy, was I ever damned if I did have – fun. However, I have since gratefully learned that God’s Word is a thou shalt HAVE ― kind of liberating manuscript once we know His thoughts towards us through knowing Christ our generously wonderful Savior!” ~LMJ~