I thought it would be fitting for my first blog post to be about my personal journey with Jesus. This is my testimony in a nutshell – “For great is Your mercy toward me, and You have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol” (Psalm 86:13).
Growing up, I attended church regularly and believed that Jesus was real. However, I really didn’t understand that I was a sinner, in need of God’s mercy and forgiveness in my life until the summer between my sixth and seventh grade year at a church camp I attended. It was then that I decided to pray to receive Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and ask Him to truly forgive me of my sin. But, even though I called myself a Christian, I did not truly live like one during my high school years. I wanted to please others rather than God and did not possess a true love for Him. I considered the Bible a good moral piece of literature for people to read if they wanted to pass time, and I thought prayer was boring and mundane. I considered myself a good person. I realize now, though, that nobody is good except for One, and His name is Jesus, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
When I was a freshman at Illinois Central College, I became serious about Jesus and decided to truly make Him Lord in every area of my life. There were certain areas of my life that I still needed to surrender to Jesus. I was spurred on and challenged by a Christian organization, Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship. I recognized that I was not satisfied by living half-hearted for God, but rather wanted to be whole-hearted and truly follow Him all the days of my life. When I was a freshman in college, I made a commitment to truly follow Jesus and put Him number one in my life. Making this choice, to follow and love Jesus wholeheartedly, has been the best decision I have ever made. There is a difference between just praying a prayer to ask God to forgive you and between choosing to truly follow Him and make Him the Lord of your life.
Before I surrendered myself fully to Christ, I never knew that I could really go deep in God and experience His love in real, intimate way. I realize now that experiencing God’s joy, pleasure, and love is a reality! It can happen! God isn’t some distant, stoic Master that doesn’t care about us, but He is a passionate Pursuer and desires for close friendship with the very ones He created! He delights in His creation and desires all to repent and love Him! I also didn’t know that God still performed miracles today, healed the sick and also wanted us to give us the gifts of the Spirit (1 Cor. 12:7-11). Now, I have seen God move in such amazing ways such as healing people who are sick and giving joy to the brokenhearted. God is so generous and awesome!
It’s so amazing to look at my life and see how Jesus has truly changed me – my heart, my attitudes, and my desires. The Lord has changed my passions. I enjoy praying now. It’s not always easy or extremely exciting, but I now understand the power of prayer and that the Lord of the universe hears me when I cry out to Him. I even enjoy reading the Bible now for the Word of God is powerful and can be used as a weapon to defeat the enemy. I love spending time with Jesus, because I actually feel His presence, hear His voice, and know He delights in me! Isaiah 62:5- “as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride so shall your God rejoice over you.”
Fast forward to now – God has given me an amazing husband and two wonderful little boys that I am absolutely crazy in love with. He has been so gracious and kind to me. Now, I don’t want you to think that my life is always peachy keen; it’s not. I’ve faced many challenges, and the Lord continues to bring me opportunities that would prune me and make me more like Him. But I have chosen to follow Jesus – no turning back! He has done so much for me. He came to this earth to die for me and forgive my sins and has brought me from eternal death to eternal life. In conclusion, I will echo what David wrote in Psalm 116:1 – “I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.”