Friday, August 10, 2007

The Place Where I Grew Up

I was riding through town the other day contemplating the upcoming service in our new building and all that God has done for me and my family. I know how gracious He has been to us by allowing our Pastor to have a vision of a church here, of reaching this city we have come to love. Even though we moved here in 1995 when I was 28 this is the place where I grew up and I feel a connection here for that reason as well as the fact this is where my parents were born and raised.

Back in April of 1989 my husband and I decided to visit the church that my brother and his family were going to. I was very apprehensive about the whole thing, but we went, slipping into the back after the service had already begun. What we saw amazed us. Never before had I seen people so happy, never before had I seen such joy in all the churches I had attended. I thought "Whatever it is, I want it."

It wasn't long before we were baptized in the Name of Jesus and I received the wonderful gift of the Holy Ghost, just like the experience in the book of Acts. I was so excited. But I was also so young. I didn't have the maturity in the Lord I needed or the guidance to help me develop it and it wasn't long before I let go of everything and slid back into the depths of sin.

But God knows exactly what it takes to call us home. I stood at an altar on Easter Morning of 1996 behind the frail shoulder of my son as my brother prayed for his healing. I felt God heal him and at that time I was filled once again with the Holy Ghost.

It was there at that altar that I grew up. I saw what a mess I was making of not only my own life, but of the lives of my family. And I thanked God for healing my son in spite of me. I made a vow to Him for His mercy in Ethan's life and I gave my life, my family, my children back to Him.

I have never looked back. God knew how to get my attention. I knew how desperate the situation was with my son, and I knew He was the answer. He still is. So at 29 years old I "put away childish things." I grew up determined to become the wife and mother God wants me to be.

I listen to others sometimes and how shallow and self serving their lives seem to be, and I pray that they will grow up too.

Lord, I see where you brought me from. I see where I was going and how foolishly I was wasting my life. I am so grateful You heard someone's prayers for me, for I am sure that is what brought me to the altar that day. I am sure someone was praying "whatever it takes to reach her, Lord," and You knew just what that would be. And now I know more than anything *what it takes* to be who I need to be for my family. I need You more today than ever before. Help me, give me that MATURITY in my faith, in my walk with You that will allow me to reach out to others. Make me sensitive, make me usable. I am Yours today, always.

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