How I met Christ
I could do the typical when – where – why – God – saved - me testimony. But I don’t think that would give you a clear picture of who I am and what God has done in my life. The greatest transformation God made in my life was not at the moment of my salvation, but at the moment I trusted him to restore and heal my heart. That would be 15 years after my when-where-why moment. I grew up in church, I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior at 13 years old, and I began ministering in church through youth groups, administration, and worship teams at 17 years old. I’ve worked in churches alongside my husband for several years. But the whole time, I worked through a broken heart. A heart that was not whole. Yes, Jesus saved me. But there has to come a time when a person realizes there’s so much more to Salvation and this incredible relationship with God. There comes a point in the Christian life when we realize we have been missing it. Missing true intimacy with God. That moment came for me back in 2010. I didn’t know it, but God was going to rock my world.
Through devastating trials and through His incredible Word, God revealed Himself to me in a way I had never known. Even as a Christian for many years, I never felt “close” to God. I never felt like I could actually talk to God and He was right there with me. Things from my past had given me a warped perspective of God. That He wasn’t always there to protect me. That He wasn’t always watching. And the lies the enemy spewed in the times of these trials were that I wasn’t worth it. That I was too much, too emotional, too broken. That I would never be worthy, that God would never be pleased with me. No matter how much I strive to be a godly wife, a godly mother, a servant in the church… it was never enough for God. That in all actuality, God was disappointed not only in my work, but in me as a woman. I was devastated. But then something happened. I began to study God’s Word more and pray, and God began a work in me. Healing. I came to the point when I could no longer live by those lies, I could no longer miss out on having that amazing intimacy with my God. And so God completely transformed me. He renewed my mind, He restored my soul, He redeemed my marriage, and I haven’t stopped thanking Him yet!! To better explain this transformation, I want to share a journal entry from September 9, 2010…
Yesterday I took a short vow of silence. With the encouragement of a friend, I went outside and just sat in silence with one question in mind, "God, what do you think of me?" I prayed that God would reveal Himself to me...
I was sitting on the porch swing for several minutes and nothing was happening. I was desperately listening, I wanted to hear from God. But I didn't. So I closed my eyes and I tried to clear my mind, which is NOT easy!! But none-the-less, I tried. It wasn't too hot yesterday and there was a breeze that kept rustling the leaves of this huge tree in our front yard. I felt like something was leading me to go stand under the tree. So I did.
When I got underneath the tree, I saw that it's branches were massive and it was like a huge canopy above me. Immediately I felt safe and protected. I felt in my heart like God was telling me that He is like that tree. He will keep me safe. I've had ALOT of stuff happen in my life that has made me afraid. Made me feel unsafe, vulnerable. I've always been protective of my heart, feeling as if I needed to keep parts of my heart from my husband, from my kids, from my church, even attempting to keep them from God. Because I was afraid of being hurt again. Under the tree I felt assured that God is big enough and strong enough for me to trust Him. That I am free to be who He created me to be because He will keep me and protect me. I can trust Him.
Then as I continued to walk around the tree, I felt something ask "What do you see?" I looked on the ground and I could see broken branches and dead leaves that had fallen off the tree. I looked up and GOD said, "YOU ARE THE TREE." It was clear. It was amazing. That tree is strong, it's beautiful, it's majestic, it's roots are deep. It doesn't worry about the branches and leaves that are broken and fall off, it has so much more to behold. I am the tree. I am strong, I am beautiful. Parts of me have been broken and fallen away. But I am still here. I am alive and I have so much more to behold. That tree can be blown in the wind, struck by lightening, even set afire, but it will survive! And just like that tree, I will survive. No matter what tribulations I face or how the Enemy tries to break me, I will persevere. I am strong. I am beautiful. I have so much more to behold. I am the tree.
Some people might think it's hoaky, but I know God spoke to me under that tree and I feel restored, renewed, encouraged... Isaiah 61:3 "...and provide for those who grieve in Zion--to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor."
I AM THE TREE. And this has been my encounter with my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. If you have not had an encounter with Jesus Christ and would like more information, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . I would love to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with you today!
Walking in Freedom,