So when a faithful reader (who I’ve never met in person…all the more fun!) e-mailed me and asked me to share my testimony with him, I first suffered a brief flashback to my freshman year at Mercer University where my fellow students often wanted to witness and testify to me. One such student even sang a gospel song to me from the point of view of an aborted fetus in the middle of the cafeteria. Needless to say I was incredibly put off by their attempts. Fortunately my faithful reader clarified what he meant by testimony (“I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth…”) in another sentence when he asked me to share how Christ came into my life. I am very happy to do so and appreciate his interest, although I warn you all that I don’t know how to shorten stories very well.
I always knew that I needed to “figure the God thing” out before I got married as I felt like it would be a mistake not to do so, but I didn’t want to wrestle with it in college as I knew I wasn’t going to quit drinking or having sex or doing other things that I knew were considered sins, and I didn't want to put forth the effort I knew it would require. I attended a very intellectual church (about 10 professors and a few students) comprised of Christians, but I didn’t really worship or know what I believed.
The year after I graduated from college, I taught elementary school and became friends with Lori, another first year teacher. She would occasionally invite me to7:22 (a Tuesday night service at a church over an hour away), and I would always decline. Finally she pulled one of those tricks on me that sneaky people do when they want you to do something you don’t want to do. She asked me what I was doing that evening, and I responded that I had an errand to run and nothing else. Gotcha! “Well great, you can ride with me to 7:22.”
7:22 is held at North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, Georgia, and I suspect there were 2000-3000 people in attendance that evening. There was a rock band. It was total culture shock as I grew up in a very quiet (non-joyful seeming) Presbyterian church. Seriously it was like a concert, and I wouldn’t have been surprised if joints were being passed down the rows. Out of sheer amazement and psychological curiosity, I went back a few more times. I ended up moving to Buckhead to take a job as a nanny, and I continued going to 7:22 some. I would attend social events with NPCC, but I still had never attended church there. I finally went, and although I didn’t really believe, I wanted to believe and have a relationship with God. I kept putting myself in the right places, and I guess God just kept pulling at me. And finally as my then-boyfriend pointed out, I was going to have to take a leap of faith. I wasn’t going to get an e-mail confirmation or be able to hold something in my hand that served as evidence that God existed and that His son had died for me. So I did take that leap of faith, and my life has been incredibly different because of it.
Fortunately I can now tell people all of the amazing ways God has worked and is working in my life. I am doing (and not doing) things that I never would have imagined. And God has blessed me beyond my imagination. I’m still really new at this “God stuff” and have so much to learn, but fortunately God continues to convict me in various areas of my life and has blessed me with some unbelievable friends. For example, the other day I was talking to my friend Jason about the challenges I've experienced as I’m trying to date in a Christian way rather than a worldly way (probably one of the most difficult struggles I’ve faced), and after a cookout Saturday night, Jason gave me two books he had picked up for my boyfriend and me about this very issue. How awesome is that? I could easily write so much more, but unfortunately my blog does not have a billable number.
p.s. I leave for Cabo in three days!! So excited!