I thought in order for life to be meaningful and worth living, it had to be a fairy tale. I got involved in church activities and focused on my studies thinking one day I would feel happy.
Even though I achieved much, I wasn't happy.
I tried to get the attention of my parents because they were focused on my sister. When my teacher told me that I might graduate valedictorian, I went home and told my mom. But instead of celebrating she told me, "It makes no difference because your sister graduated last year as valedictorian." I felt rejected.
I thought that if I had better grades, maybe other people would appreciate me when my family couldn't. But by graduation, I was really down because I was not valedictorian. I felt that I was not important. I didn't even want to celebrate my birthday.
In college, our valedictorian was involved in the same school with me. I thought, I really need to show our school that I should have been the valedictorian rather than her. I felt hatred and cried lots of nights.
After a month of my first semester, my classmate told me that someone shared something with her that is really special. I didn't want to miss something my classmate had learned. She shared with me the Four Spiritual Laws.
The first law really struck me. I didn't know that God really loves me and has wonderful plans for my life. As she went forward, I realized that my life was really messy, that I was sinful and really needed someone who could forgive my sins. That's Jesus.
I prayed and accepted Jesus Christ into my life. I committed to follow Him because I fully believed.
My life really turned upside down after that. The Lord used Campus Crusade for Christ to show me acceptance. The valedictorian also became a member of Campus Crusade. We were former friends but she knew I really had hatred for her because of what happened, so we got mad at each other. We reconciled, and I was so amazed.
After I received Christ and experienced His love, I can really say my life is meaningful even though it isn't a fairy tale. I know that struggles may always come, but the Lord enables me to overcome those trials as I pursue and spend time with Him. Life is worth living because I found security, assurance and acceptance in Christ Jesus.
Roel Ceballos is a student at the University of Southeastern Philippines - Davao studying statistics. He will graduate in 2009. He enjoys telling other students on his campus about God's love, watching television and reading inspiring stories. Roel serves as a student leader with Campus Crusade for Christ.
When we put words to the hard parts of our stories, we can give those around us a new picture of who Jesus is.
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