I was blessed to grow up in a loving, Christian home as a pastor’s daughter. Shortly after my 5th birthday, I attended Vacation Bible School at my church where I was taught about Jesus and the gospel. I understood that I was a sinner and the only hope for my soul was in Jesus and that He died to save me. () I asked for forgiveness and accepted Him as my Savior on July 16, 1997.
Once I started high school, everything started changing and getting more difficult in my life. I began to despise being labeled as the “perfect-church girl”, so I attempted to prove I could be rebellious. These were the hardest years of my life as I endured painful, emotional trials.
After high school, I attended Faith Baptist Bible College. There was an intense battle going on inside my heart during my time at Faith – I still wasn’t willing to completely give my life to Jesus. I tried to keep everything inside and deal with my problems on my own, and that dug me into a deep depression. By the time I finished college, various trials had led me to a scary place in my life – I was doubting God’s love and care for me. I knew He was real, but I couldn’t understand how a loving God would allow such awful things to continue happening to me and His children. It seemed as if every time I was getting back on my feet to follow Him, another trial would knock me right back down.
The most influential person to me during that time was my brother. He was going through a trial much worse than mine, and was learning to lean on God more and more through it all. He spoke truth to me and told me that all suffering as a Christian is for our sanctification and God’s glory. God cares about us so much that He wants to strengthen us, and sometimes that has to be through heartache and pain. () God also promises He will walk with us through every struggle. My brother encouraged me to read God’s Word so eventually I started reading through Psalms.
God has completely transformed my heart and life, and I cannot get enough of His Word. I started attending High Pointe Church after I moved to Altoona in September of 2013, and I am so thankful for the way God has used this church to grow me closer to Him. By His grace, I’m learning to trust and depend on Him daily.
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (ESV)
10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. (ESV)