It Is Never Too Late to Believe in Jesus

It Is Never Too Late to Believe in Jesus April 26, 2024

Old picture of a little girl riding on her dad's back wearing a fire hat and pjs in a house.
Photo courtesy of G. Nichols. We must always have hope for our loved ones as Christians.

It Is Never Too Late to Believe in Jesus

Have you lost hope? Hope in your loved one’s salvation? Will they ever believe in Jesus? Is it ever too late to believe in the free gift of grace? May my father’s and my shared story of faith give you hope and encouragement as you wait. 

Growing Up Catholic

My father and I share a testimony of belief together.

My dad grew up a self-confessed “cradle Catholic.” My mom converted from Protestantism to Catholicism (and later back to Protestantism), so I too grew up in the Catholic Church. 

As a child, my father attended masses in Latin. Never once did I see my dad pray or open the Bible, but we were always present at Sunday (sometimes Saturday evenings) mass at 8am. 

The Name of Jesus was never uttered by him, well, not in a worshipful or reverent way at least… 

Diagnosed with cancer when I was about four years old, he made it through that battle to never take a day of work off again for the next 22 years. This was with a third of his lymphatic system removed, mind you. 

A veteran, he was literally a trooper, a paratrooper to be exact. And he was charismatic! Funny as all get out, intelligent, and hard working. He was a “good person” and successful by worldly standards. 

From all the evidence I have seen, he did not have a relationship with Jesus. Jesus was not his savior, because truthfully, he did not know that he needed to be saved. 

He quoted Bill Murray, not the Bible, and I loved him very much.

I Want to Know Jesus Too

My husband, then fiancé, had just seen the Passion of the Christ, and called to tell me all about it. You don’t get to hear much emotion out of most engineers, so I hung on his every word. I had toyed around with church, and believed in God, but I really did not get the whole salvation need or see where Jesus fit in at all. 

Grace? What is that? 

So when I heard about the crucifixion and all that Jesus did, I said something to the effect of, “I don’t know why He died for me. But I want to understand.” He prayed with me over the phone. 

A few years later, we were married with a little one (now a Senior- I am not well about it) my husband and I decided to get baptized together in the Baptist church, and we invited my dad. 

After that, it was time to live out our faith, repent, read the Word, and get to know Jesus. Cue the sanctification! 

I know that my dad saw a change in me. That change was Jesus of course.

Pre-Grieving Death

After a few dizzy episodes and falls, my dad ended up downtown in the Neurological ICU with a brain tumor. 

Having dealt with a fear of death my entire life due to my dad’s cancer round one, plus my mom’s car accident much like my own, I was plagued with what I call pre-grief where I would grieve in advance the deaths of my loved ones. Daily. 

I was ate up with worry. 

But when I started walking with the Lord, the Holy Spirit exchanged that all consuming worry with His all-transcending peace. (Phil. 4:7)

This peace became apparent as we sat in the waiting room of his brain surgery. I was able to witness and pray for others in the room who were waiting on relatively simple procedures, assuring many around us that I had “peace” as we waited all day for the outcome. 

I never realized until right now actually, that I was seeing my family as people who were dying instead of people who were alive. And when I became a believer, God not only rescued me and promised me eternal life, He also gave me new life to live every day. 

Worrying about death? I was dead.

Having faith in Jesus? I am alive.

God saves us on MANY levels. He’s so God like that. 

Saved by the Beeper

Months after the brain tumor was removed, the cancer had spread. My parents had moved in with us. At the time, my daughter was on her way to becoming two years old. She loved to watch PBS while sitting on Gigi’s lap.

Our church family at the time gave my dad a pager. A little device that beeped whenever people called the number for it. When called, you would hear a message prompting you to pray over the person who had the pager/beeper, and were then asked to input the numbers of your zip code so the person with the pager would see that people were praying for them. 

“What does this beeping mean?” Asked my Father. 

“It means people are praying for you, Dad.” 

“Can I pray for them?” 

(Remember, how I had never seen or heard my dad pray before?)

“Sure you can!” 

He never knew that while people were praying for his healing, it was not just for his physical, but for his spiritual healing. With every beep, I saw floods of prayers come through for my dad from zip codes not just from Texas, but from all over the U.S. This is the Church my friends. 

In April, I got the call that my dad had prayed and believed in Jesus with my mom. I cannot express the supernatural joy that spiraled through my whole person. I had never prayed for anything more than from my dad to be saved. My dad believed! 

Holy Upgrade

I thought my dad was cool before he believed, but then he became on fire for the Lord. 

Unable to walk as the cancer spread to his bones, I watched him become a recliner evangelist. It was so precious. People would call him all the time, and he would tell them: “Let me pray for you.” 

My keyboard is getting teary as I type, remembering all the good in that season. 

He went to the hospital for the last time, and while he was in there a family came in. He had worked with the father of the family for several years. I greeted him at my dad’s hospital room door, and he said, “We are here to talk about Jesus today,” he said as he clutched his Bible. I reached out to him arm and said, “He is a believer now.” 

To watch this grown man’s praise at my statement- I just have no words to speak about it. 

This is the Church, my friends. 


A month later, my dad went home to Jesus. One month. We had one month with him after he decided to receive salvation from the Lord and accept the free gift of grace. 

One month after the angels rejoiced in my dad’s salvation, they witnessed his home going into Heaven. 

One month of seeing an already pretty great man, lay aside his own strength and trade it in for the Lord’s. 

We cannot do it on our own. But God can. He is mighty and willing to save us! 

He loves us! He has a rescue plan! Do you know it? We are born dead to sin  and that is why we must be born again. it’s why you know deep, deep in your soul- that you cannot do it. No matter how much good is in you or me. 

But God can and did and will. PRAISE JESUS. 

If you are still with me— let me share with you— it is never, ever too late. 

One month for my dad? It was like One Day for the thief on the cross. Or a few hours depending on how long he lived after being crucified. There is still time. 

Hope Against Hope

And this is why we have hope against hope. I am begging all Christians- share and be prepared! The Bible says, “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect…” (NIV, 1 Peter 3:15)

My dad’s story is just one of the many reasons I have hope. I have seen and felt true change in myself, in him, in so many people that I love and care about. I have seen Jesus set people free. He has come to “set the captives free” (Isaiah 61:1).

I would like to leave you with this, we are waiting upon the Lord. Do not give up your hope. Our hope shows the victory that we believe in found in Jesus Christ alone. 

And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You. (Psalm 39:7)

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