A Constant Struggle: The Way I Found Love

December 20, 2008

I didn’t find love all in one day. It wasn’t like suddenly – bam – it happened. I didn’t know it then, but from the time my parents knew I was growing inside my mother’s stomach, I was loved. In fact, I was very loved. I had an older sister, uncles, aunts, grandparents, and my own parents. But there was a love so much greater that had loved me even before my relatives.

God loved me. He still does.

I let him down every day, but He has never let me down.

I don’t belong here writing this today. None of us deserve to be here. God could have ended the world on page 2 of the Bible. But He didn’t. Why? Because He wanted something to love. He wanted something to glorify Him. Looking at the world today, you wonder how many people love Him back, and how many people glorify Him.

I’m not here to preach to you. I’m here to tell you my story, and how God has worked – and is still working – in my life.

I was born to Christian parents who loved the Lord and raised (and are still raising) my and my siblings to follow Him

I remember going to Church when I was young, singing, going to Sunday school, sitting with my parents and listening to the pastor speak. I grew up going to church every Sunday, sometimes more. My dad worked with the church when we lived in Jordan. He worked with the church when we lived in the states. I knew a lot of facts about the Bible and God. But most importantly, I believed what Jesus had done for me when he died on the cross, and was glad he ransomed me.

I was baptized when I was nine, and though I’ve turned my back on God since, he’s always brought me back to Him.

What I believed was always there from the time between nine and twelve, but it was just “there.” It wasn’t until my whole world came crashing down around me that I really started to know God.

I’d just finished eighth grade, and we were moving. That meant leaving behind my dance school, my guitar teacher, my friends, my church. I’d known we might move for the past eight years, but now that it was actually there, I wanted to fight it and not go. When we were packing up to move, I had wanted to find a new ballet school once we reached our destination. But God had other plans – over the years, ballet had become my passion. If you had asked me what I loved most in life, I would have said God, my family, and ballet. So when I found out that I couldn’t go on pointe, that hurt. A lot. There were many nights where I’d sit there and cry myself to sleep.

We moved in the middle of all of this, and after some thought and trying out dance schools, I decided not to dance anymore. But I was beginning to see God’s plan in all of this. Maybe He didn’t want me to dance. Maybe instead He wanted me to do something else. So I turned to focus on music, and since then I’ve been able to serve Him with my music in many ways.

Over Christmas that year I finally started settling in to where we had moved to. I realized that I did already have real friends here, and started liking where we were. It’s been uphill from there.

I was thirteen then, and started struggling with who I was. I knew I was a child of God, I knew I was a musician and a member of my family. I knew that I liked to read and write, but suddenly with all of these new people I was finding new influences and didn’t like who I was becoming. For two years I struggled with this, until recently, the summer I turned fifteen, summer 2008.

I was at camp, where there was no one I knew before I went there, and my first time singing in a choir or playing in a band… honestly, I was terrified. But God got me through it, and more than that, He taught me a lot about Him, which in turn helped me understand who I was.

Suddenly I wasn’t as shy as before, I didn’t put people down at all, I started smiling a lot more and being really joyful. I realized that I was free in Christ to be a child of the King, and that all that mattered was that I had been accepted to the only place that I ever needed to be accepted in – my family and Christ’s family.

Don’t let anyone ever fool you that there needs to be a certain date that you have to be able to put your finger on to say you’re saved. The only date I have is the day I was baptized, and I know it happened before that. You don’t need a date, just that it happened and that God has rescued you… let His love consume you.

But how do I find love? You might ask.

Jesus came as a ransom for us. God sent his ONLY SON to die for us, so we could be free from sin. You’ve sinned, I’ve sinner. We’ve all sinned. We’ve all fallen short of God, and we can’t get to Him and heaven on our own, because God is perfect and cannot stand to look at our sin. The good news is, since Jesus came and died for us, taking away all of our sins, then rising again to show God’s great glory and power, we don’t have to go to hell. All we have to do is to believe.
God loves you. He sent Jesus to die for YOU. To ransom YOU from your pain and hurt.
You are loved – more than you could ever, ever, EVER imagine.

All you have to do is accept God’s free gift to you and to mankind. It’s that simple. We’ve fallen short of God. There’s only one way to come back to Him, and that’s why Jesus had to die for us – to crush death, and its sting.

It’s a free gift.

And it frees us.

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