What better way to start off my lil blog than to tell you my testimony and quite a bit more info than you’ll get in the “About” tab.
I grew up in a household of two believing parents and a sister who became a Christian when she went away to college (we’re 10 years apart in age). I was influenced and taught by my dad and thankfully I never had problems believing in Jesus, his miracles, or anything else. I was baptized at a young age because I did believe, but I didn’t know what it meant. I wondered for years, “How do you know you’re a Christian? If I know I believe, then am I saved? Will I really go to heaven? I always pray for God to show me I’m saved and He never answers. Does He even know me?”
Once I started getting older, I understood more about what it means to be a Christian. I never cared about Jesus and my faith during my teen years. I never wanted to care. I wanted to do what I wanted, even though I was never a bad kid, and I knew that by following Jesus, things had to change and be “different”. I knew there were expectations from God to live by and I just assumed I’d become a Christian when I went off to college like my sister did.
I began going to Crossland Community Church when I was about 15 because I loved the music and loved the pastor, Gregg. I had never been able to find a church that I could actually retain any of the information being taught because I would get so bored, and then if you add that into not caring it just equals a bad combination. (Side note: If you’ve never been to Crossland, you need to go! It’s seriously THE BEST church. Hold me to it.)
Whenever I was 16, I was in a terrible car accident with my “first love”. The car flipped 3 times and as soon as I saw that we were flipping, I thought those were my last breaths. I cannot even begin to tell you how terrifying it was. I came out with scratches on my face and hands from the glass flying, a sore chest from the seatbelt, and a sore neck. Nothing else. Nothing. In the second picture, you can see in the backseat the left side is completely bashed in… on the right side, where I was sitting, there is what looks like an untouched “bubble” that was protecting the top of my head. One of the firefighters told me it’s a complete miracle all of us came out alive with no injuries, and he said it’s even more of a miracle I chose to sit on the right side. He and a paramedic said it would have likely killed me had I been sitting where the car is crushed in. I did not understand why God had spared me. One seat over and I would’ve likely been dead. I did not follow Him, would continue not following Him for years… and He chose to spare me.
Somewhere in year 18, I would go to church every week and after the sermon, I would go home and read the passages Gregg went over. I truly believed that if you seek, you will find (Matthew 7:7) and I was seeking God. I wanted to know God knew me. I wanted to be saved. I wanted to be different. I wanted change after the sin filled, terrible 2 year relationship. I truly wanted God to move in me.
God spoke to me.
Three years ago to this month, December 2014, I became a Christian. I reread John 1:43-51. In short, Phillip was following Jesus, found Nathanael and told him that he was with Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph. Nathanael was skeptical, asking “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” Phillip just told him to come and see.
When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, “Here truly is an Israelite in whom there is no deceit.”
“How do you know me?” Nathanael asked.
Jesus answered, “Before Phillip called you, while you were sitting under the fig tree, I saw you.”
…”Before Phillip called you, while you were sitting under the fig tree, I SAW YOU”. HE SEES ME. HE KNOWS ME, BEFORE I EVEN KNEW HIM. Before Nathanael even saw Jesus, Jesus knew him. This verse was Jesus speaking directly to me. There is no way I can really describe that feeling or encounter, but I just knew it was Him. I knew it was Him telling me he does see me, he does know me. Before I ever even thought of knowing Him. That’s all I needed, friends.
Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God, you are the king of Israel.”
Jesus said, “You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You will see greater things than that. Very truly I tell you, you will see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”
You guys. Jesus saved me from that wreck. Jesus did. There is no doubt in my mind. He saw me, before I EVER saw Him. Before I even believed, I saw greater things than Jesus revealing himself to me in these verses. He saved me from dying in my sin, sexual immorality, immaturity, etc. and being destined to spending an eternity in hell.
“The favor of God is bestowed on us because of who He is, not who we are or what we have done” – Gregg Farrell
My daily walk with God has not been the perfect feat. I’ve endured many failures, struggled with my sinful weaknesses, my mother divorcing my dad and the pain and destruction that caused for our family, disappointments from getting engaged to the wedding being called off two days before and going through that hurt, and realizing months later I was being deceived the entire 2 years of that relationship. God spared me from that as well. I have thankfully forgiven and I’m moving forward with a strength that only comes from God (see Ephesians 1:18-21). Just because we are promised an eternity in Him does not mean life on earth will not be complicated. It’s always complicated and will always be complicated.
If you walk with Him, you cannot remain the same person. – Beth Moore
Today, I am grateful for the opportunity to continue growing. Grateful for the opportunity to continue my quest with God. I do not want to remain the same person, I want to be a true light to the world. I want to walk with Him. I want to know Him more and more, day by day. I want to continue to be redeemed from my past, present, and future screw ups and failures. I want my daily walk to be one pleasing to him. I’m grateful for every opportunity I’ve had at Crossland Community Church to lead worship in the youth and main church services. Grateful for every girl I’m getting to know in my life group. Grateful for a roof over my head and good food to eat. Thankful for good health and a sound mind. Excited for my future.
Most of all, I am thankful for Jesus’ grace, forgiveness of my sins, and mercy on me.
This is not the end… more of a “To Be Continued”.