So I’m taking a break from reading Huckleberry Finn, wellll, uh, really taking a break from doing my homework (#collegeproblems #gettingamasters), and I keep thinking about my Bible study and our weekly challenge. It’s to write out our story and how we came to find Jesus and then share it with someone, and this week has been quite a trying time and well, I haven’t been out very much. I’m not a hermit, trust me on that one, I just haven’t been on the schedule enough. Work is slow (so is this book) and here I am. Here’s my story y’all:
I was raised in the Catholic church. I went to “church class” on Wednesday nights after school, got confirmed and it was all good. I went to church when I could, mostly holidays, but for some reason never quite felt at home, I didn’t feel a connection. (Now, I’m not hating on the Catholic church. Let me be clear on that. I’m just talking about my experience.) I never wanted to be honest about it because I never had another church-y experience to really compare too. I visited other friends churches but never really let myself take it in because it wasn’t my church. I constantly felt guilty about not going but I didn’t really know why.So, like most young people going into college, I stopped. I halted all belief in anything. I believed there was a possibility of God but I was open to other ways of life too. To be honest, there was always a sense of grief, of guilt even, there was something missing in me. So, I went to school, I got in a doomed relationship, got my heartbroken, nearly got kicked out, and partied and I mean partied (sorry, Mom). I tried what I could to fill a hole. And then I jumped into that hole.
My last year in college I suffered a lot. I remember living alone in a bottom level apartment and not wanting to go home and be alone. Let me repeat that: Alone. I felt scared. I felt darkness surround me, and I had nightmare upon nightmare where I had to fight things off and it freaked me out! I wasn’t happy. I was depressed and nothing helped. Until I thought, “Hm, maybe I should go back to church.” So I found a small Catholic church and went in one Sunday and nearly cried. It’s funny that I went back to place where I felt like I had no connection to begin with. It’s because I had nothing else. I felt like I had hit rock bottom, I hit my lowest low. So I sat there, on a wooden pew and bit my lip. It wasn’t until I graduated and got what I hope will be my worst job ever, and met my friend Sarah, who in retrospect guided me back to what church is really about. Where love stems from, and that’s Jesus. The first time we hung out it was my birthday and she asked me point blank what did I believe in. I was stumped and had no idea really. I just said “a little bit of everything.” A frown set onto her face and she handed me a book called The Story by Max Lucado and Randy Frazee. That was my birthday gift. I took her up on her challenge to read it. And well, “duh” is the word, I read it. Flash forward three years and I’m here. I’m in a church I love, and I’m growing in a community, and I feel protected, loved and a part of something. I feel good. But not without countless questions and feelings of doubt and trying, trying times. I still go through difficult periods. But I gave my life to Christ and it’s not easy. In a world where we want everything to be easy, this is not. But it is worth it. Trust me on that. God loves you even with all the sin you have in you. He loves you and wants what is good and right, and truthful for you. What is best, like a father would. We’re all bad, we’ve all got sin in us, but it’s up to us-to you, to me, to decide what we want to do, what path we want to take. Do we want to keep feeling empty and jump into holes or do we want to rise above them and become better, more loving, peaceful people? I’ll take the latter.