Thursday, May 22, 2014

by the word of your testimony

We’ve been talking in the body a lot about the power in our testimony and have had different people share each Sunday. Two of my favorite scriptures are Rev. 12:11—“And they have conquered Him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.” And also the verse in 1 corinthians 2:2 —“For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.” The Lord stirred in me a couple weeks ago (when a sister shared her testimony) the importance and how good it is for us to know how to proclaim Jesus’ work in our lives. I am not a teacher nor do i feel like i can give great words of wisdom to people, but there is one thing that i know that i can do and that is to share what the Lord has done to me and for me. How He found me, saved me and bought me when i was not worthy. I can come and claim Christ and Him Crucified, buried and raised from the dead and how THAT has changed my life forever. I would encourage you all to not be ashamed of and even to make it a practice to share what the Lord’s done to you/for you. You don’t need to be a great evangelist or have the Romans road memorized. The world just needs Jesus and what better way to share Jesus than by telling Him from your life. I’ve been stirred in my heart to share my testimony so this is my heart of obedience as weak as that may be at times…

  I grew up in a christian home. My parents were first generation believers and I am so thankful of all the generational chains and curses that they broke for us and that I do not have to struggle with today. My parents being saved when they were adults and knowing the depth of their own sins and how freely the Lord forgave them were great examples of the love and mercy of the Lord in my life. We went to church every time the doors were open. I mean- Sunday school, Sunday morning services, Sunday night and Wednesday night; plus the occasional revivals. I’m so thankful for the faithfulness my parents taught me while growing up.  So, I grew up hearing the gospel. It was more the “hell fire and brimstone” or “fire insurance” gospel but the Lord used it to bring me to a place of wanting to know Him and that fear of hell was really real in my life. I remember the first time the Lord dealt with my heart. The Spirit just overcame me as i set in my ‘pew’  with tears running down my face and I realized my need for a Savior. I didn’t go to an alter but I believe that that is when I became a believer. That is when I knew I needed Him(Jesus) and I wanted Him. 

   Fast forward a few years of living my own life but still going to 3+ services a week and lots of alter calls and youth camps where I would continually go down and ‘rededicate my life’ to Jesus and I came to a place where I was so tired of the back and forth Christian life that I had. I was 12 and on the outside thought that I had everyone fooled by my “Christian walk” but on the inside I knew my sins and struggles and started to even question if I was a christian or not. It was around this time that we had one of those revivals with a hell fire and brimstone preacher (not mocking and I believe the Lord can use any method He pleases to bring in prodigals, call the lost or empower the weak in Jesus name) that I set in my pew again just tired, tired of my struggles and tired of failing my God and myself. Here is where I believe I truly learned what it meant to surrender my life. It was at this point that I believe that I started being not just a believer but a follower of Jesus.  

   Fast forward about 6 or 7 years.  See the thing was that I was a weird kid. Kind of a natural introvert who would rather stay home than to go out but I had a knack for working a crowd. I mean people loved me and I made sure they did. I was that young adult that every grandma tried to set me up with their grandson and I was ok with that—after all, all i wanted to be “when i grew up” was a mom and wife. I even had someone tell me that I’d “make a great preacher’s wife someday if I’d grow my hair out and get a little more bible knowledge”. lol, I didn’t mind though because it had been my dream since I was little. I had spent years trying my hardest to be a good christian girl and to find my fairy tail christian romance man to sweep me off my feet and to marry me. We were gonna have a great christian home and a white picket fence to boot. I had lots of boyfriends along the way that I was convinced that this could be ‘the one.’ In all of this still not truly knowing how to walk in the Spirit and his leading or combat the enemies attack. I would still spend my week as normal doing the best I could (failing miserably at times) and then going back to church to get a refresher to last me till I came back again. It was along this time that the Lord brought a mentor into my life. He taught the young adult Sunday school class that I started to attend and it was under his discipleship/mentoring that I feel like I began to grow as a follower of Jesus. In this period of my life I still struggled a lot with my own sins and struggles but I started to view Jesus as not just the Savior that I first believed in, then followed; but I started to see Him as a King over everything on this earth and King of my life.

Fast forward a bit and I get to a point where I am done trying to find my own fairy tail and start putting that energy into learning to love Jesus and give my ALL—hopes,dreams and plans to Him. It was in this period of time that I met Ryan. I was in a great place with Jesus and am so thankful for the steps the Lord laid out for me. When I look back and think about it, i think that when i saw Ryan for the first time, i believe that it was one of the first times i recognized the voice of the Lord in my life. I knew that i was gonna marry him when i met him. Not just as a fairly tail but as hearing the Father say “this is who you will partner for my kingdom with.” A year later we are married and another year later we have Emma and are moving to Kansas….and this is where King Jesus really starts messing us up for His Kingdom! We have failed a lot and have not always been perfect but i know my King! I am learning to hear His voice more and more each day and to be living stones with the body around us. In each season He has brought me too i may slip and slide along the way but i have known by testimony and by evidence of His power that i may stumble and fail (and i do a lot) but He is my rock and redeemer. I know my redeemer lives and i am learning to look for His return more and more each day!