Three years ago, I was an atheist. I was also suicidal and angry at the world. I had my goodbye letter written out and I stashed the letter and slept in my bed for what was supposed to be the last time.
That night, I had a dream. I saw no faces, but heard this:
“I know you feel alone in the pain you feel, but every scar you bear, I bear it, too. You’re not alone in this.”
I didn’t start believing in God right then, and the dream didn’t “heal me”, but I didn’t kill myself the next day like I planned.
I started going to a youth group because my mother thought it would make me have fun, and I did. But, as an atheist, I felt like the pastor was telling fairytales.
I had this ongoing war within myself on whether or not I wanted to listen to what this preacher had to say, and one night in August 2009, I listened.
That night, the pastor was talking about apathy and anger. He said that we didn’t have to live in that. He told us that we didn’t have to let the things we go through determine how we feel about the rest of our lives.
That night, I prayed for the first time in 2 years.
I prayed that God would forgive me and that he would give me strength to change. I thanked God for loving me even when I was running from him.
Then I worshipped for the first time. I raised my hands and sang the lyrics to the song that the worship band was playing.
“The greatest love that anyone could ever know, that overcame the cross and grave to find my soul. And til I see you face to face and grace amazing takes me home, I’ll trust in you.”
After service was dismissed, I walked to my sister’s car and told her about my night.
“Michelle, I felt God tonight. I’ve changed.”
She told me she was happy for me, and said she’d love to hear the details. So, I told her everything. She was the first person I ever witnessed to.
I let go of everything that night. All my fear, all my anger, all my uncertainty. Everything negative I had put in my life was stripped away from me, and for the first time in a year, I was happy.
I can’t say that I don’t ever feel sad or just separated, but I can say that it’s different, because I have faith that God will pull me through.
2 Timothy 4:6
“But as for me, my life has already been poured out for the spirit.”