I was born in Loris, SC in 1971 to my parents, Ronald and Bonnell Norris. To say I was a hyperactive child would be putting it mildly. My father worked long hours, and my mother worked nights at the hospital. I was always in some sort of trouble. Some how God brought us all through it. In the summer of 1999, I attended a church service at Mt. Hebron, which was my Grandfather’s church. I drove by the church and didn’t see my Grandparents’ car, so I decided to go back home. Then I had this feeling that I needed to go back, that church should not be about my Grandparents, but about myself. So, I turned around and went back and found a seat in the back row. That day there was a guest speaker. I can’t recall his name or much of what he said, but when he gave the alter call I found myself standing in front of him clueless. That doesn’t matter now, because that day I received Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior. After the service, there were so many people that came up to me that I had never met and said to me, “You must be Chris? We have been praying for you for so long.” WOW! I could not believe the members of that church had been praying for me. That was an awesome feeling to know that people that I had never met felt that strongly about me. After I talked with my Grandfather about the experience, he told me that one day I would be a Pastor. Wait a minute Granddaddy, I think you have your wires crossed. I will never be called to do something like that. After several years, more and more people began to confirm what my Grandfather has said before. There was only one thing…..
You see the problem was I was not completely sold into the idea of being a Pastor or anything else with the Church. Even though I was saved, I was still holding on to the ways of the world. I’m sure some of you can relate. I still wanted to do what I wanted to do and not what God was starting to reveal in my life. I knew the Holy Spirit was with me because He was continually telling me, “Chris, DON’T DO THAT..” Of course I rarely listened. I would put it in the back of my mind and do whatever it was that I had planned, and then bam!!! Something bad would happen. Then here I was saying, God I should have listened to you, now will you get me out of this situation, and I”ll be in Church Sunday morning. Sound familiar? I was using God as a security blanket, a get out of jail card so to speak. I did this for many years, until….
The Complete Transformation
For as long as I can remember I have known that there is a God that loves us and wants to have a personal relationship with each and everyone of us. As the years passed, I started to feel God’s presence growing in my life. I joined the Army in 1993 and served until 2010. The power of prayer has brought me through a lot. I am so glad God did not give up on me. He was with me through it all. After my military life was over, I began to fight a spiritual war within myself. I was angry, ill, depressed, and separated from everyone in my life. I didn’t want to have contact with anyone, not even myself. I had contemplated suicide. That is how bad it was to be me during that time. The thing is I didn’t see what my trials were doing to my family, they were suffering with me. My wife and I were arguing all the time and not spending any time together, my kids were angry at the world and me. My life was falling apart. Then one day in October of 2017, I made a phone call by mistake, or was it a mistake at all? Tash, is a close and dear friend. She has been someone I could talk to from the moment she entered my life. That day in October I was calling someone else, but she answered the phone. We began to catch up with what was going on in our lives but as the conversation continued, I noticed a change in her. The change was the way she was acting and talking, she had changed. After we said our goodbyes and talk to you later, I went about my business as usual. It was not long that God spoke to me, “WHY? WHY HAVE YOU LET ONE PERSON COME BETWEEN US?” There was no mistaking who it was that was talking to me. God was calling me out. Now, what kind of excuse can I give to God? Let’s see, oh, there is not one. God began to thump me in the head for the next few day’s. I asked my Mother if she was going to Church that Wednesday night. She replied,” Of course.” I told her I was going too. I showed up and things started rolling from there. A few months later, and here we are. My Grandfather was correct all along. God was calling me into the ministry. Thing is, now I’m ready to accept and answer the call. Since I have accepted God’s call the war within myself has ended. My life has truly changed, a complete transformation. I am full of the Holy Spirit and I no longer even want to see, hear, or experience the ways of the world. I know that I will not be able to escape the world because I have to live in it, but I can control many things that show up. I truly know now beyond a shadow of a doubt that my name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Thank you Tash for shaking up my spirit, I love you!
God’s word is infallible. It is truth at it’s very core. You see, to not believe God’s word, is to not believe in God. Why? In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.(John1:1). In the Old Testament, God created all, and in the New Testament, God gave all! God took on the sins of the world for us. A perfect and sinless God manifested Himself in the flesh, fully God and fully human, to take on sin and death for both you and me so that we can have Eternal Life. What a gift! All we have to do is accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, Profess our Faith in public, and be Baptized. That’s it! Here is where to begin:
Romans 10:9-10 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
How can we know, you may ask?
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
If you feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit upon you right now, then I encourage you to say these words. “Dear God, I am a sinner. Please forgive me of my sins and come into my life. Lord I’m sorry for all the wrong I have done. I realize that you came and gave your life for me on the cross so that I can be saved and have Eternal Life. God I accept you right now as my Lord and savior. Amen.”
The next steps are on you, find a Church, surround yourself with Christians that can help you to grow in God and become a light in this world to others. We are all called to be disciples of Christ to go out and spread the Word of God. I pray that you will become a strong person of Faith and that God will lead you to your Calling……. Keep in mind you are a new creation now. Just as in Genesis 1:1, God created the heavens and the earth, you too are now a new creation in God.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.