"If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved."
This is such a beautiful passage. So concise, so simple, so straight forward. It almost seems to simple, too easy.
There is nothing there about repentance. Nothing about works and good deeds. No stipulation on tithing or daily Bible reading. Just confession and belief, public and private.
All the rest, the changes, the actions, the lifestyle, it all comes afterward. It comes as a result of the belief, not as a prerequisite to it.
We so often get our expectations so mixed up - for ourselves, for others, for God. We expect others to act as saints when they are sinners, we expect to be able to fix ourselves to gain access to the presence of God, we expect God, at times, to do nothing.
The changes that happen in the life of a believer happen through love - God's love of us and our love towards Him. He empowers the changes, we see them through. They are not a requirement for our salvation, but evidence of it.