It could be said that I grew up in the church, however, my heart was not entirely in it. I loved many things which other Christians loved yet I saw God only in His simplest form, rather than the complex being He actually is. My priorities were robotic in nature, just as anyone else. My focus was on acquiring an education, marriage, children, job, house etc. But then, what? Maybe friends and entertainment would suffice. As such, I lived and spoke like the world, yet almost every Sunday I was in church. I was presenting an image of one who was ‘holier than thou’ but inside I was a spiritually and emotionally immature boy with a self-righteous spirit.
Nonetheless, as I grew into adolescence, I gained a keener ear to what was preached in church. There was a lot of talk about the end times, the character who is Jesus Christ and the need to have him in our lives. Honestly, at times these topics were very confusing. I still had no hunger to read the word, pray on a deeper and more intimate level, and to let go of the seductive pleasures of the world. However, I felt something calling me to at least try this Christian thing. A couple months passed and I began to question myself, “ Who am I?” I soon realized that I was not righteous as I believed. Even though I was a goodie-goodie in some ways, I was also a hypocrite with fluctuating standards. I was selfish, prideful, envious, cold and unsympathetic. I began to feel guilty about my wrongdoings. I desired forgiveness in order to be rid of the shame of my past and to truly work in the plan which God called me.
In humility, I truly came before God in prayer and confessed my wrongs. This took months, however it sparked the match, where I began to hunger to know about Jesus Chirst. His words became as he said, “A lamp unto my feet and a light to my path.” I began applying the words of the Bible into my life. Weeks turned into months and months into years. As a result, I became more calm in my spirit. Joy and peace ruled in my heart. A song of praise of God’s goodness and mercies was in my mouth even in the darkest days of my life. A warmth and comfort which cannot be easily explained overshadowed me and became a rod to my sorrows and pain. I saw myself as it is written in the word of God, “ A fearfully and wonderfully made creature,” formed and fashioned by God for his honor and glory.
His love is within me and he is with me every step of the way: guiding, directing, counseling, teaching. Everything didn’t come easily though. Walking with Christ is a process of ups, downs, moments of supposedly ‘silence’. However, His peace and promises are sure. There is assurance that my future needs will be met. I need not worry about anything as my Father, who is in heaven, God himself, calls me his son.
If you are reading this and for some reason you hate God, and you feel alone, know that He is constantly loving you. He will turn the situation around. Therefore, choose God as He chooses you.
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