Life in God through Christ cannot be extinguished. It cannot die. That is why it is called eternal life. It does, of course, also mean what most people think of which is living forever in heaven. But it also means partaking of God's life here and now. It means partaking of His sustaining support and of His love—and as His love is eternal, so is the life He gives to those who love Him. When you are born again, you are hidden in Christ and your life comes from heavenly places.
The evidence that you have been born again is first of all repentance. Repentance--the sad glad, the regret and remorse, and the quiet sense of helpless sadness about your wrong which you now see and over which you weep and sob--means that something has been added. It is the Presence of God's light that is repenting your soul.
You cannot repent yourself. God repents you. And once it begins, it is something over which you have no control. It just happens. It happens both over a short and a long period of time. The first things you will see are your own wrongs—that you hated your dad or your mom, that you are phony, and that you are not honest with people. That you are full of hate and resentment, and full of judgment toward others.
As time progresses and the weeks, months and years pass by, what you see will become more bearable and subtle. For example, during moments of excitement, impressions were made upon you that are not supposed to be there. These little impressions will flash before your mental eye to be seen and dissolved in the light.
There is no salvation without repentance. There is no repentance until you are willing to see your errors and admit you are wrong. Some never will. Most people have to hit rock bottom before they are willing to admit wrong. Then, if you are blessed, God will enter your life and the first things you will see are your own wrongs.
Have you heard the old expression? God wants volunteers not conscripts. God will not violate your freedom. He gives you freedom to err, to deny Him, to try to live without Him, and the avoid Him. But He does give us conscience—the wordless word within, the still small voice, that gently, ever so gently, taps on the door of your mind, and seeks to call you back.
Blessed is the one who realizes that conscience is not our enemy; it is our friend. When you yield to conscience and admit that is right and you are wrong, you will finally have done the first right thing in your life.
But if you remain stubborn in your pride, then you will harden your heart, make excuses and rationalize your error. You will blame others and distract yourself by judging others, and avoid seeing your own wrong by fixating on their wrong. You might also project your guilt onto others, such as blaming your kids and through cruel cleverness tempt them to become wrong so you can either blame then or try to save them.
You do not realize it, but by having rejected God you accept the devil, who gives you ideas in your mind and comforts you in your defection. It is in this way, that your life goes from bad to worse. First there is deterioration, then death of the body, and then there will be the consequences in the afterlife. When you accept the devil to assist you in your enmity with conscience, then the devil claims you. You become his chattel to do with as he wishes.
For those who are blessed to have a change of heart, after the catharsis and purging of repentance, there will follow a new life—one of endless discovery and adventure, one of realizing shining and beautiful truths, and one of joy.
This new life of fearless adventuring will include persecution from those in the world who sense something different about you. Some will hate you. But it is actually not you that they hate; it is the light in you.
You will not be aware of its presence, but those who hate it will flee from it. They will seek to put it out, but they cannot. Even should you be seized and thrown in prison and then killed, they cannot kill your soul or the Light from God which it shares.
Those along the way who you meet who are currently slaves of sin but who recognize the good in you and respond to it you can also awaken and perhaps save. How grateful they will be. Just remember that it is not you, but the Light in you, that saves others. Of yourself you can do nothing.
Should you be blessed to awaken and to welcome and receive more and more light, as a result of your first change of heart and then you commitment to have God in your life and to do His will, you will become the salt of the earth.
Perhaps when you were a child, you experienced some persecution, even from members of your own family. You were the ugly ducking. There was something different about you, and that difference is hated by those who are the sworn enemies of God. They tried to put your lights out because it made them uncomfortable. They may have hated you just because you were honest or because they saw you looking at them with the innocent eyes of a child.
They succeeded to some extent, perhaps, in putting your lights out. Some, such as an Albert Einstein, a King David, or a Tom Sawyer resist all efforts to make them conform, and because of their sheer gustiness, hang onto their free spirit and their originality. Other children, because of their innocence which makes the guilty ones aware of their guilt, are beaten, punished, driven insane or killed.
But you are still here. You survived, though perhaps with a few scars. You may have had your lights put out for awhile or even for decades. You joined them in their darkness, where the only happiness is unawareness and pleasure seeking.
You undoubtedly thought that there was something wrong with you (although there really was nothing wrong with you—there was something wrong with them). You doubted yourself and went along with the world. Perhaps you were ostracized and rejected, and because of your resentment, you wanted approval and to be accepted. So you sold yourself down the river and turned from you true self to become worldly.
But no matter how you tried, you never felt comfortable doing all the things that others seemed to be enjoying. You may have partied and went along with the crowd, but somehow it was not for you.
Years of living in darkness went by and then something began to call you back. It was God Who you had known as conscience. Like everyone else, you disliked conscience because it made you feel bad, but you could not put it out.
You have been a child of God from the beginning. But you did not know it. All you knew was that you were somewhat different. It was your destiny to one day begin the journey back to God and to who you were really meant to be, which was always there in heavenly places, waiting to take shape in you here on earth, after the wonderful day when repentance begins.
Things will be different now. When you were a child and young person, your persecutors got to you, and they succeeded in upsetting you and shutting you down because of your resentment toward them. Besides, you were just a child, and easy to bamboozle, intimidate, and push around. But now you are a man or a women, a mature child of God, and blessed with the power of the awareness, you will no longer have to cave in and doubt yourself. You will be able to speak up for yourself and perhaps make them doubt themselves.
This is the way it should be, with the wicked ones doubting themselves and the children of the light triumphing.
On your way toward the Light, watch out for two things: resentment and doubt. The evil ones, and those who are temporarily or permanently on the wrong side of things, will do everything in their power to try to confuse you and make you doubt yourself. Just see what they are up to and quietly remain unmovable. You do not have to struggle with them or argue with them; just remain of the same mind. Then they will have to struggle to make you doubt, and when they fail, they will become upset and confused. And that is the way it should be.
Secondly, don't resent them. Remember Christ's words on the cross "Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do."
"Resist not evil. Overcome evil with good."