Sandy, USA, Age 44
I was 39 years old when I committed my life to the Lord. I had been living with someone for 6 years and was engaged to him for the last two. During that two-year period, I began to feel restless. I began to question if what I was doing in my life was right. I felt something pulling at me that I could not explain. I felt like something was missing in my life, and yet I could not figure out what could be missing. I thought I had everything I wanted. What the Lord began to put on my heart was that I had not been living a good life. I was drinking to get drunk, smoking pot, swearing and not being a very good mother, daughter, friend, employee and wife to be. I was realizing that I was trying to live my life for selfish reasons–the me, me, me life!
On June 18, 2000, my sister, a strong believer in Jesus, called and asked me if I wanted to go to church with them. I loved being around my family and would always go with them to church when they asked. I enjoyed their strength as a family living for Jesus and yet I could not understand it. I agreed to go to church with them that day, which happened to be Father’s Day in the USA.
When we got to the church I knew a lot of the people there from when I had previously attended with my sister’s family. We said our usual “hello’s” and then sat down in the sanctuary for the service. Immediately I felt that the Lord was speaking to me. The Pastor was teaching (by memory) from the Book of Matthew on the character traits of Jesus. It is called the Beatitudes. It talks about poverty of spirit, mourning and meekness. Little did I know that was where the Holy Spirit had been leading me the past two years!
Poverty of Spirit, to me, was being utterly spiritually destitute. It was the “missing something”. To feel complete I thought I needed human love. Basically, apart from God, I was spiritually dead! Once the realization came to me about the state I was in, the Holy Spirit was consciously active in making me realize I could not do anything without Jesus as my first and only true love.
Secondly, once God humbled me, I began to truly mourn the sin I was in by living my life the way I wanted and not even setting a good example for the child the Lord had given me. My eyes were opened once I had been humbled, and I began to hate the sin in my life. Matthew 5:4 says, “Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.” I needed to feel peace and comfort and completeness! I realized then that I was not going to be able to do that on my own. I needed Jesus to fulfil me, and I needed to accept Him, the author and perfecter of our faith, into my heart to begin to feel whole.
As I was crying, my sister could not even look at me without crying herself. I saw no one in that church but the Lord that day! I finally knew I needed Jesus in my life, and when the service was over, I looked at my sister and said, “I’m ready!”
My sister prayed with me and I confessed my sins to the Lord and asked Him to be my personal Lord and Savior, knowing that I could not live my life one moment longer without Him! I needed Him! After that, a peace seemed to wash over me like rain! I was so joyful! I came to the Father on Father’s Day!
I knew that the road was just beginning and that God was going to work in my life in a way I never imagined, and I also knew that as Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Him that strengthens me.”
The last step in that day was recognizing my meekness by accepting God dealing with my life as being a good thing. Hebrews 12:11 says “All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” Being able to look beyond my circumstances and obeying God by trying to be more like Jesus does not come naturally. No matter how upsetting or hurtful or uncomfortable my life became (due to the sin that was in my life), being submissive to the Will of God was necessary. It is His truth! I realized that God is sovereign and in absolute control! How tough it is to give the control over!
The difference between now and then is amazing. I don’t swear any longer, no drinking, no pot smoking, and shortly after my accepting Jesus into my life and seeing the changes that occurred, my daughter accepted Jesus into her heart! My daughter is one of the most wonderful, godly kids I know. She teaches me daily about giving the control over to God and is totally passionate about Jesus! I am so blessed by the changes that God has done in our lives that I could never imagine us going back to the “old” way! I recognized God’s love and will strive to always be passionate about being his loving and obedient daughter!
I still have trouble and trials and situations where I feel lost and lonely and out of control but I know that God has it all in His control and knows what I need before I know! Romans 3:23 says “…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. Now, though, I am in constant prayer before making choices and I see God’s hand in my life. I am surrounded by loving men and women who help me spiritually. When I am happy, sad or otherwise, my church family is there to help.
Since I have come to the Lord, my oldest and youngest brother have accepted Jesus as well. Although my oldest brother is still struggling, my younger brother is trudging along! Even his two younger kids have Jesus in their hearts! It is all worth it!
John 14:1-3 says “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, [there] you may be also.” Knowing that Jesus is preparing a room in heaven for all of us can’t be beat!