We have a gathering at our house every Tuesday night and we get together and worship, hear some one's testimony and have a meal together. Each week we choose someones name out of a bowl to see who speaks next week so my name got picked this week and I got to share my testimony. Thought I would share it with all of you too!
Grew up in a non Christian home didn't go to church, parents were divorced was I was 2. Then fast forward I was about 21 I wasn't into drugs or alcohol was pretty much a "good girl" trying to please everyone but had been seeking for love, just really wounded and hurt and ended up in a bad relationship with a guy. He was a gambler and into drinking and drugs. I was a waitress and worked and worked to give him money. Took out loans for him etc. He would say he was going to pay me back and then didn't. Each time I believed that he would, I thought he was going to change. I really believed I was going to get love in return for doing this for him. I was super deceived at the time, not knowing who I was or what I deserved or that I was even loved. I just was super hurt by people and it was getting to the point where I couldn't trust anyone. It was getting pretty bad and I was really depressed. Then I thought most of my Christian friends are always happy oh I should go to church then. Searched for churches then found this church and went to it for a while. Just went by myself and sat in the back then left real fast because I was so afraid to talk to people and that I would get hurt. One day I filled out this connection card and I checked the box that said I have questions and would like someone to call me. So the pastor called me and we started meeting weekly and I had my list of questions for him about what was being taught and about the bible. Finally one day(Valentine's Day) when I met with my pastor I gave my heart to the Lord!(Bless you Pastor Chris!) At that time I was still in this bad relationship I would have weekly meetings with one of our pastors and he would coach me through how to leave this guy. Finally left him and from there started a process of healing with the Lord. About a year later I started getting hungry for the Lord and for His word, the word was coming alive. I would stay up late at night and read the bible. I had a white board of all my friends and family's prayer requests and would just prayer over each person. Started enjoying being around people making real friendships which I was scared about before. They started having prayer meetings at our church where we were learning prophecy and learning about the Holy Spirit. During this same time is when I met Tom, he was the leader of my small group. Tom and I started meeting and going out for coffee and just reading the bible and going after John 15:1-5 all about abiding. Then I found out about IHOP and the One thing conference and raised money to go. I had never been around so many young people loving the Lord and had never experienced this kind of worship. At the conference I decided I needed to do an internship and I felt like if I didn't go right then, then I probably never would. So raised money and with in a week went to do the internship, moved and Tom and I were together at that time and did a long distance relationship for 8 months. There I grew so much, living in community, learned how to pray, first time learning about end times and stuff but the big thing was I learned that God really loves me actually He likes me. That it's not about petitions it's about a friendship a relationship. Found out who I am in Him, that I am beautiful in His sight, that I am lovely and His delight. All this was new to me, I always longed for an identity and finally found one in Him. My prayers were being answered one after another with provision and heart issues. He did all this because He loves me and that's it He love us guys! I mean it's not just some saying He really does. I finally came to that place of being able to receive His love and once I received His love I was able to pour out my love whole heartedly. And now this is the kind of life I am called to live is be a radical lover of God, my husband is and we are raising are kids to be radical lovers of God. I challenge you to be one too! I pray that He will strengthen you with His might, that He would root you and ground you in His love and that you would truly know the depths of His love for you! In Jesus name, Amen!