My Story...

Before I decided to follow Jesus, my life was a struggle.  I was lonely and unproductive a lot of the time.  I was always trying to handle things myself and have them turn out wrong.  I was always searching to be happy and not finding it.  I was always wondering “Is this it?  Is this all life is?”  There were a lot of good things happening in my life, but there was always something missing.  Now I know what it was.  It was Jesus!

 

The hardest thing I ever did was to just give up and trust in him no matter what.  I lay on an operating table having a heart attack and realized I could die!  I started to pray:  “Lord, please show me the way to you.”  How blessed I am to have this second chance at life, not to do it alone but to have the Lord right here with me to show me the way.  He helps me make my hard decisions and my easy ones too.  I can talk to him no matter where I am at anytime and I am never alone.  What a blessing!  Good or bad he is always there for me.

 

Since I decided to follow Jesus, I am so happy with the direction he has led me in.  I am complete.  I understand there are gonna be bumps in the road of life, but Jesus will be there for me and help me through them.  God is good.  I thank the Lord for my church, my family, and my friends.

My Story...

Before I trusted Christ I was lost, in need of guidance.  I married a man from another faith, and he would ridicule me when he discovered me reading the Bible or when I talked about going to church.  So, until recently I had not been in church for about six years.  Those were the darkest, most miserable days of my life.  For a long time, I felt like maybe I deserved all the misfortune that came my way.  I felt I was paying for my sins.

 

When I decided to trust my life to Christ, I realized God loves us no matter what.  There is nothing I can do to make God love me because he already does.  My life began to turn around.  I felt a calming peace come over me, an unspeakable joy.

 

While I still experience trials, I have stopped dwelling on the past and worrying about the future.  As long as I leave everything in Christ’s hands, he will handle them in the way they should be handled.  I am learning to live day by day and let Christ lead the way.  While the answers don’t always appear in black and white, I know each day is a piece of the puzzle, and sometimes it takes a while to see the whole picture.  In the meantime, I am enjoying my life in ways I thought were lost to me.

My Story...

“Before I decided to trust Christ, I was insecure about myself and my marriage, I worried to the point it affected my health, I got angry and defensive fairly easily, I battled alcohol addiction, and I smoked marijuana.  I also had an abnormal appetite for sexual gratification.  To sum it up—it was all about me!

 

It wasn't until I lost my spouse to divorce and precious time with our child that I cried out to Jesus.  I had taken so many things for granted for so many years, and I finally lost it all, I hit rock bottom, I was mentally and physically exhausted.  The pain I was experiencing was greater than any I had ever felt before; and I couldn't take it any longer.

 

My walk with Christ hasn't been easy, I've backslidden a couple of times and have experienced separations from Christ because of it; separations that I never want to experience again.

 

I can honesty say that I love Christ more than life itself and that it's evident by the lack of desire for personal gratification that I once held on to so tightly.  It's no longer about me but about Him.

 

I look back over the past 2 1/2 years and am very thankful for His unconditional love and for His patience; I see how He's changed my life, given me hope for tomorrow, strengthened my commitment in serving Him and in serving others.  I look at people differently now—I love everybody!

 

I'm very appreciative of everything.  I look at the beauty in His creation.  I give thanks every day for my beautiful daughter, for the people He places in my path to encourage me, to teach me, for the absence of the sin that kept me burdened with guilt and with shame.

 

I don't sweat the small stuff like I used too, or the ‘big’ stuff either, I take time to smell the roses and to enjoy life.  All I want now is to please Him in everything I do, to love others as he loves me and to forgive others as I'm forgiven.

 

I truly believe that when I invited Christ into my heart, He healed my broken life.”

My Story...

“Before I trusted Christ, there was nothing in my life to show that I had anything special to keep me from being like ‘the crowd.’  There was a lack of true joy and a lack of certainty regarding heaven and eternity.

 

The primary difference in my life since deciding to follow Christ is the peace in my inner heart of hearts that I am a child of God, and imperfect as I am, Jesus has accepted me, and nothing I can do will change that.

 

I am continually awed that Christ died for me.  When every single human has let me down, Christ never has.  I love to think of the day when all believers will be in heaven, knowing all the answers to all the questions we ever had, and being able to worship in a glorious way.”

My Story...

“Before I trusted Christ, my life seemed to have no meaning.  For a long time I knew something was missing.  My teenage years consisted of finding parties and running wild.  Then I started asking:  ‘Isn’t there more to life than this?’  I wanted a Bible but didn’t know where to get one.  Most of my friends were still caught up in the lifestyle I was trying to escape.

 

It was not until recently after going through some tough times that I realized that a life without Christ can never be full and complete.  I know without a doubt that the family of Christ will never turn its back on me.  Since I have opened my heart to God and taken the leap of faith, I have met so many wonderful people.  I thank God for his sacrifice in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  I will never let go!”

My Story...

At a very young age, I knew who Jesus was, and I knew that he loved me.  I was aware that a benevolent Creator had crafted me carefully in His image.  I could feel Him around me.  As I got older, I began to second-guess myself about my beliefs and the beliefs of my family.  When I was a pre-teen, I went through times where I couldn’t fully trust that God was there and that He still cared.  I was selfish, impulsive, angry, sad, and a little reckless.  I mostly did what I wanted to do most of the time, though I still experienced guilt because I had a base in Christian teachings.  I never really strayed too far from God, and I still thank Him that he watched over and protected me from real harm even when I was being selfish.

 

When I was about thirteen, I really got an idea of who God could be in my life if I would just let myself be vulnerable to Him.  I learned that God doesn’t laugh at me when I turn to Him and ask for help.  I decided to ask Him to reform me and my attitude.  After a couple of years spent thinking defiantly and doubting that my God could be the only one, I humbly resigned myself to the idea that I would never need another spiritual answer in my life.  I could stop looking around and doubting, listening to the world’s alternative answers, and letting myself be the authority.  I would open my heart and mind to God, knowing that He would accept my pleas even in my brokenness. 

 

Now that I am renewed with a Godly worldview and am willing to trust Christ as my Leader, I can believe God’s promises and confidently follow in the footsteps of His Son.  I know that the One who created me can deal with my flaws and help me to improve my attitude, my behavior, and my outlook on life.  Now that I know that my flesh must be kept under submission, I am more open to asking God for guidance in my everyday walk.  I am still human, and I will always stumble.  But now I can trust that, although I won’t always know what to do or think in every situation, God is always there to provide an answer, as long as I will listen.”

My Story...

“Before I trusted Christ, I went through failed marriages, alcohol, and drugs.  I was totally lost in my life and priorities.  I had built a wall around myself and wouldn’t let anything, anybody into my life.  I was so lonely I didn’t want to live.

 

In accepting Christ alone as Leader and Forgiver of my life, I found that after years of untrust and failures that God and trusting in him and not trying to do things myself and putting it in his hands that life would be wonderful!

 

Since deciding to follow Christ, I have never felt so full of love and hope.  I now know that God is with me totally in every aspect of my life.  I thank God every day for my wife and my church family.  There will still be tough times, but now with God in my life and the love I feel from him, I will never be alone again.”

My Story...

“Before I trusted Christ, I was full of confusion, depression, and uncertainty about life.  Something was missing.  There had to be something better.

 

I realized that through Christ anything is possible.  I know he will always love me and never forsake me.

 

Since deciding to follow Christ, I have an energy that I didn’t have before.  The peace and calmness are unexplainable.  I know that it is only God.  He has something great in store for me.  I’m excited everyday I wake up now, looking forward to living my life for Christ.”

My Story...

"Early in my life I became proficient at the ritual of religion, but I never really came to know Christ as personal Lord and Savior.  As I witnessed the examples shown me by the world around me, I found myself turning far away from organized religion.  I somehow believed that by living my life as a good person I could overcome and forget the disappointments and fears of my youth.

 

My life became an endless pursuit of something, some elusive answer, some experience that would put everything right.  Actually, all I ever accomplished in this quest was to walk into one wall after another.

 

After 16 years my marriage ended due to multiple reasons any one of which probably never would have occurred in a solid faith-based relationship.  I experienced great regret over this failing; simply being good had not worked.

 

It finally occurred to me to raise my eyes to heaven instead of just walking around looking at the ground.  It began with a small quiet prayer one day—mostly out of frustration over my life, mostly out of fear of failure.  What a difference it made.  Christ’s love began to heal me.

 

My life started to come into focus for the first time.  The simple yet profound realization came over me that God truly loves me.  That realization allowed me to start loving myself for the very first time in my life.  I feel that my personal transformation has been instrumental in leading my children to the Lord.  I choose my future life to be a witness to Christ’s ability to change lives through faith.”

My Story...

“Before I decided to trust Christ, I focused on myself.  I became stuck on my own thoughts and problems.  I prayed often for help, but instead of listening I was caught up in my own rationalizations, and lived in active disobedience.  I did things that hurt others.

 

Coming to full trust in Christ has been a slow process for me.  To come to Christ, I had to deal with my anger.  I was left to often shoulder alone the burden of watching my mother die a slow and painful death.  For ten years I lived a life of anger toward God.  I blamed God for my mother’s illness.

 

I kept praying for God to help me come to him.  In little ways he would reach out to me.  It got to the point I could no longer ignore what God was telling me.  It was clear that God wanted me to have a personal relationship with Jesus. 

 

Christ didn’t want me to cling to ritual, he wanted me to cling to him.  I began to work on my problems and began to understand that it was not God that let me down.  I was able to ask God for forgiveness, to forgive those who had hurt me, and to forgive myself.  I was able to trust that Christ alone is the leader and forgiver of my life.

 

Since I decided to follow Christ, I’ve been able to live a more full life.  I no longer have to fear what life will bring because I know that no matter what happens, Christ is there for me.  It is wonderful to be able to hope again.  I feel like I can finally relax.  I know that God has plans for my life.  I know he wants to use me.”

My Story...

“Before I decided to trust Christ, my life lacked purpose.  I lived only for myself and what made me feel good and happy.  I partied too much and had surface level relationships that weren’t based on much more than just having a good time.  I felt like I was a disappointment to my family because I wasn’t going to church and living a Christian life.  I never spent much time thinking about where I came from, why I was here and what would happen after I died.  I didn’t have any practicing Christians as friends and was hesitant to commit myself because it was a big change from what I was used to.

 

I found myself in a relationship that turned out very badly and was the victim of a stalker.  I spent a lot of time blaming myself for things that happened, and it had a negative effect on me, both mentally and physically.  It was through my relationship with God that I was finally able to forgive myself and begin to heal.

 

I came to realize what a difference Christ makes in my life and how living for Him makes me feel fulfilled and joyful.  Through small group, study on my own, and Sunday worship, I have come to trust Christ as Leader and Forgiver of my life.

 

I feel like being a Christ follower has given me a chance to do things right and given me the opportunity to lay the foundation for a lifetime of joy.  It has been hard at times, having to make decisions to let go of some old friends that were standing in the way of this journey that I am on.  While I will never have all the answers, I am more sure of myself and my purpose, and I have Jesus Christ to thank for that.”