Our preschool granddaughter reaches for my (Pam's) hand anytime we walk. Recently as we walked together, she heard the rumbling of a train nearby and, reaching up for me, said, "Nana, I ‘fraid' (afraid)". I immediately picked her up and gave her a hug. She knows I'm there for her. She knows I will rescue her.

We are God's kids. He wants us to know that He is there for us. Sure, walking with God does have its payoffs. I have a happy marriage and three terrific sons who are smart, capable, giving citizens. I have amazing friend­ships, and I get to work doing what I love. I'm blessed to travel to many exciting places and meet some interesting, inspiring people. I have a safe home and enjoy the hope of heaven.

But these aren't the reasons I believe in Jesus.

When I was in college, I discovered a thing called Christian music. I was introduced to an artist named Evie, who sang a song titled "If Heaven Was Never Promised to Me." The song caused me to ask, "Why do I believe in Jesus?" Sure I have the amazing gift of heaven, but what has God done already here on earth?

Although everyone would answer this question differently, here's what my list looks like:

  • God heard my cry for help when my abusive father was out of control.
  • God walked me out of chaos through the wisdom of a godly mentor.
  • God challenged me to rethink how to run a love relationship.
  • God sent food when Bill and I were struggling, poor students.
  • God gave me a bicycle to ride when my car died. 
  • God gave Bill and I hope in the face of death, disease, and disappointments.
  • God gave me wisdom when I was perplexed in my parenting.
  • God gave me love when I was angry or frustrated in my marriage.
  • God has always been with me to process my emotions so Bill is spared the drama!
  • God sent me Bill, an amazing partner in life and love.

I fell in love with my husband when he explained the meaning of a simple phrase on the front of his leather Bible—"That they may know You." This phrase comes from John 17:3: "Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent."

Eternal life means knowing God now, not waiting until heaven. To know Christ is to know the one called "Immanuel," which means, "God with us" (Matthew 1:23). It is to know the God who said, "Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (Matthew 28:20). It is to know the God who promised, "I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you" (Hebrews 13:5, nasb). When I look back, I see how God has been with me, with us, and I am grateful.

Begin your own list of why you believe in Jesus. Then take some time as a couple and a family to review and thank God for all He has done to create a portrait of love, grace and provision in your life.

Bill and Pam Farrel are international speakers, relationship specialists and best selling authors of over 30 books. Follow them on Twitter and Facebook. www.billandpam.org