I wrote this having a heart’s desire to share what God has been doing in my life with others. My name is Jenna, I’m in the eighth grade and I’m thirteen years old. I live with my little brother Mason, who is 7, my mom, and my dad. I live in a house in Las Vegas Nevada. I like to draw, write and sing. Those things have become emotional outlets for me.
As a child, I was really quiet and in my shell. I felt lonely and like I wasn’t accepted at school. Then I started to struggle with anxiety because I had stress regarding my grades in school and also in my friendships. Regarding my grades, I was afraid I would fail. I was worried I would get in trouble. I made threats to hurt myself and runaway. I told another girl who told the school counselor on me. I wasn’t honest with my parents, I was scared of what their reaction might be. I wasn’t very happy about it once adults found out about my anxiety and attempts to hide my feelings.
I thought I could handle it myself. I can be very stubborn I wanted to do things my way, and don’t have an easy time accepting help, or asking for it when needed. Others suggested multiple things and I never really gave it a chance at the time. I thought counseling was just a punishment for having feelings.
I hadn’t really given God a chance. I thought it was just another story and sounded to good to be true. There is a God who loves and wants a relationship with me. He also wants me to come to him with my troubles. God wants to hear from me. He loves and accepts me.
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Matthew 11.28-30. NASB
I was searching for acceptance, hope, and love. I got on Instagram and it consumed my life along with video games and relationships. It made me happy for a little bit, but that quickly turned around. It actually made me feel worse and made my anxiety grow also leaving me feeling very rejected. I found out that you can’t put all your trust in people and it, and filling my time with video games was making me feel very miserable. What I thought were all the things I was looking for wasn’t. I was still missing something, and that was hope along with someone that was really my friend and far more than I could’ve asked for.
In 2013 we started going to a church called Canyon Ridge. This is where I met Ashlea. Ashlea has served as a mentor and great friend. Seeds were planted about God, and I also got the opportunity to go to summer camp. When I first really experienced God, it was at summer camp during worship. I felt God calling me. That day when they were speaking, they asked if anyone who hadn’t accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior wanted to and I ended up inviting God into my life that night.
I often talk to Ashlea and tell her when I am having a problem, etc. She points me toward God. Whether that is texting me Bible verses, or telling me to listen to worship music, or to pray, she points me toward God. Another person who’s been a good influence on me is my mom. Even if it was just telling me to pray about it or read the Bible. During these times I was very surprised and felt free of trouble, happy, and at peace in these moments when I went to God.
Yes, I still struggle with a lot of these things, but I know now that God’s got this and trust that He will make it work for His good. I now also know that I’m accepted and am loved by Him no matter what my flaws are. I’m not perfect about going to Him with everything. Nobody is, but the truth is, God is present and all knowing there isn’t anything we can’t go to Him with. We can try and hide from God all we want and hide our imperfections but, He is a good father who knows exactly what we need before we say a word.
NASB 1 Peter 8-9 “and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.”
Christ being in my life has made a major difference. I’ve really started to notice that in the past couple months. God has made Himself very real to me. When I read His word or take my problems to Him, He gives me peace, and comfort. I feel joy even in tough situations. I want and am learning to deal with my emotions in a way that pleases God. I desire to read the Bible and pray, even listen to worship music when I feel down etc.
God’s forgiveness has had a major effect on my life. The truth that he loves me enough to send his son on the cross to forgive me of my sins so that I don’t half to feel guilty. So that I don’t half to face death because I’m imperfect. That has changed me because I have the security of knowing that I’m forgiven no matter what others say or how much trouble I might be in or how much I might beat myself up I’m loved.
I have started to learn recently and through writing this, that He is enough and it’s not worth putting myself down. My identity is in Him. I’m a Child of God, no matter what anybody says or what I do, I’ll always be His. Nothing can separate me from His love.
I just want to please God with my life and live in a way that pleases Him. I wrote this in hopes that people would come to know God as the good Father He is and that his Love is unconditional.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son so that whoever believes in him shall not perish have eternal life.” John 3:16
Thank you for reading!