When I was 5, I went through a lot. Most of it caused me to build walls around myself so that no one could hurt me, but that left me feeling lonely. My first time hearing about Jesus was at school. Back then my parents were Christians, but I wasn’t aware of it, nor would they share their faith.
So many things were going on around me, at times I’d feel alone or upset. I would sit around sometimes and just draw or I would get myself into trouble for things like cutting my hair or using things that weren’t mine.
I distinctively remember being 18mnths and taking my own trip to the beach. My parents were surprised that I managed to get past the 7 foot gate. They were very much pleased that I had crossed the road without getting hit by a car. I can say today that God’s hand was always and still is on my life.
I want to recap to when I was 5. Back then I would go to sleep knowing that someone was watching me, and I could feel God’s presence in the midst of my pain and joy.
I wanted to find out more about this Jesus and what he was like. I thought it was just a story, the only part I got was that he created the earth. So by the time I was 7 it was the time when my mum got divorced, I lost friends, School wasn’t working and didn’t seem important.
A while later I was sent to live with my mum. My mum seemed happier and despite our financial and physical situation I felt safe and loved more than ever. A lot went on in my life, but God was always there guarding my mind from the worst of it all. I then got invited to go to church one Sunday with my family. It was great seeing people and singing songs, it was like a party. I never understood the point in church or why people were saying the name of Jesus.
When I was 9, I was still trying to find out the purpose for my life and who Jesus was. I finally got the answer when I was 11 years old and at a camp. I’d heard a third time that Jesus loved me for real, that He died for my sins, that he wanted to be my friend and that he was my heavenly father and that he was different than anyone else on this planet. That he wanted a place in my life and that if I asked him, he would be a part of my life.
It finally stuck to my heart that He was real. I was like that makes perfect sense, he’s the person who watches me. What took me so long to figure that one out? Why wasn’t I told this from the beginning?
I then decided to give my life over to God not realizing that later I’d be back to square 1 after backsliding. I truly thought that If I said all the right things, did all the right things when people were watching then I would still be a Christian. When I heard the ten commandments for the first time I felt so fake. I knew that I had messed things up so bad, not only was I a fake Christian but I understood that I was a sinner.
I wanted to get my life sorted with God with him being the leader, the center, the focus of my life. I learned so much from then onwards and still a lot today. It’s not by our works that we please God but by faith.
When I was 14, I was at a friend’s church, and I felt so strongly the presence of God. I never knew that God would speak through people to share what he wanted to say to me. It all made sense and I felt loved and appreciated by God. He told me things that changed my life and my perspective of Him.
Today I am still walking with the Lord and growing deeper in my relationship with him. I’m in a season where faith is needed, and things are being revealed. I’m trying to be patient and know that I can trust God to lead me to where he wants me. It’s hard at times but I know what his word says. If he says that he’ll never leave me nor forsake me then I must choose to believe that.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
When I read his word and speak to him it fills me up and gives me strength to go through things daily. I’ll be 16 on August 14th and it will be 6 years since I gave my life to God and 10 years since I first heard His name. Without him I’m nothing, with him I have purpose, hope, love, joy and more than what the world or someone else could offer.
I am free.