I am sure that each of us have stories about the cost of following our Savior. I can only write about this as a Jew, and what it cost me in my family and also in relationships with other Jews.
Each of us carries our Cross, but in comparison to the blessings of being in the Lord’s family, and knowing Yeshua personally; having the Blessed Hope of the Rapture, and experiencing the peace which does pass all understanding – the cost of following Him in light of His Love and blessings is really no cost at all.
Spending eternity with Him is more real than our lives here on earth.
“Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law” (Luke 12:51-53).
As a Young Child
I can’t remember a time when I was not thinking about Jesus and wondering if I would ever know the truth about Him. My dad would tell us that He was a good man; even a prophet, and he would say that if the world would live by his teachings – it would be a wonderful place. But then my dad would always say “But He wasn’t who He said He was.” That is a contradiction in terms: Good men don’t lie.
I’ve often wondered how my dad knew about the teachings of Yeshua. He was brought up in an orthodox Jewish home. He went to Hebrew high school. Somewhere along my dad’s travels, someone must have told him about Jesus. Perhaps it was during WWII.
In the Synagogue
My teacher in our synagogue was Mrs. Shalowitz. She was kind to us and seemed very loving. But when I would ask her in class “Who was Jesus?” I would get a stern look from her, and she would tell me that we didn’t speak of Him in the Synagogue. That only increased my determination to know the truth about this man who changed history and even our calendar.
My family’s Reaction to my Faith in Jesus
I was 31 years old when I met Yeshua. That was by far the greatest event of my entire life. I wanted to tell the world! If I could have stood on a high hill with a megaphone, I would have shouted it to everyone who passed by. “Jesus is the Messiah of the whole world! But you must repent and trust Him!”
I told my parents. They were not angry, but they didn’t believe that there had truly been a change in me. They thought it was just a faze, and that certainly I would eventually get over it. I shared the Gospel with my siblings. I was never treated well by them anyway, but after I told them about Jesus, they turned on me and acted as if I were a leper. Still, the joy in my heart burned bright, and the Lord would console me by the reading of His Word.
At one point in my life, my sisters did not talk to me for over 20 years. I prayed that the Lord would change this and He did. My oldest sister connected with me again because of Facebook. Now we talk most every week on the phone. She had set the rules for our relationship – no religion and no politics. I have abided by her rules, but surprisingly she is the one who brings up God!
A Jewish Man who had been my Pediatrician
Dr. Wolf had been my doctor since I was 6 months old. He knew our family well. He left his practice in pediatrics and became an allergist. I went to see him because of my allergies and I wore a Cross around my neck.
Dr. Wolf’s countenance when he walked into the room changed from a sweet smile to anger and rage. He asked me what that was around my neck. I told him that I was a Messianic Jew. He glared at me and said “Don’t ever call yourself a Jew!”
I guess that my excitement and the joy of my Salvation rendered me void of common sense in those early years. I learned that if I was going to witness to my people, that it was not a good idea to wear the Cross. You see, Jews look at the Cross as persecution. They do not realize that those who called themselves “Christians” yet persecuted and slaughtered the Jews, were not Christians at all. I wrote an article about this:
The Cross and How Jews Perceive It
My Parents Move to Florida
When my parents retired to Melbourne, Florida, I felt so compelled to write to my dad and share Yeshua with him. I wanted him to truly understand that Jesus really is the Messiah of the Jews, but that we had missed it. I shared much of Romans 11 with him. I also sent him the book “Betrayed.” I would recommend this book to anyone who has been sharing Yeshua with a Jewish friend. It was written by Stan Telchin, and it is amazing.
I was moved to tears when my dad wrote back to me. He was never very demonstrative about how he felt about us. He adored my mom, but sadly he didn’t have much to say to us kids. But in the letter that he wrote, he told me that he was so proud of me. He said that I was his only child who cared about the 10 Commandments. Even though he did not mention Jesus, I was enthralled with his response. I felt that he was at least open to the Gospel. I carry this precious letter in my Bible wherever I go.
My parents moved back up to Maryland because my dad was very sick. The Lord allowed me the privilege of leading my father to Him on the very night of his death. I look forward to seeing him in heaven!
My Best Friend from High School
I was a loner in high school. I had one good friend and her name was Linda. Linda’s parents had been in Auschwitz during WWII. They had their camp numbers tattooed on their arms. The only reason that her parents made it out alive, was that her father was a tailor, and her mother was an interpreter. The Nazis used them for their skills. Linda and I were inseparable. We both were singers and we were the only soloists who performed in our high school talent shows.
We had lost touch after high school. I thought of her so often. Then one day I received a message on Facebook. It was Linda asking me if I was Geri Rosenberg! We were so excited to be reunited. But the very next day, I saw that she was no longer my FB friend. She wrote a message to me which said that she could not be my friend. She had seen my page and she said that many in her family had people who died in the camps, and they would not understand how I could believe in Jesus. She said that she didn’t understand either. Then she was gone.
I had her email address and I felt that I had to share Yeshua with her before she was forever out of my life. So I wrote my testimony in an email. After that, she blocked my emails from coming to her.
I wept bitterly.
In Many Churches
I won’t go into much detail about this, but I was so disappointed in many Baptist churches with a few members being anti-Semitic. I really never thought that I would experience this in a church. In the world – yes – I knew that my people were hated. But in the church? Well, being older in the Lord now, I understand that anyone can say they are a Christian, but not all are. I even had one man tell me that my father was the devil!
For a few years now, my husband and I have not attended a church. We worship at home. We watch videos of pastors we love. Adrian Rogers, who is with the Lord, is one of our favorites. And of course we love and watch Pastor JD!
There is a cost we all pay for being born again from above, and walking with our King.
But the greater cost is for the lost who reject Him right up to their death. They will not have another chance to belong to Him. They will spend eternity apart from God, in a place of unspeakable horrors.
Brethren, we are so blessed. Keep running the race. I believe that the finish line is right over the horizon!
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