So, what is my story....
I am a total blog hopper, and I always see sidebar buttons that will lead you to a post about the author's story, so I thought I'd follow suit and write my own. Not that I'm a follower... (
Moving on. Like I said this is my story.
My story is not one filled with a past of drugs or alcohol addiction, it's not the story of a girl who was pregnant at a young age by a guy she did not know, it is also not the story of a perfect, seamless journey.
Growing up in a family of five, I was the youngest of two girls and one boy. My sister and I are 6 1/2 years apart and my brother and I 2 1/2. The dynamic of my family is unique in that my brother was diagnosed developmentally delayed at an early age. For my parents, this diagnosis redefined who they were. Not only were they parents, but they were now parents of a child with significant disabilities.
But this is my story, remember?
I grew up in a family that believed in christian morals and principles. We attended church every Sunday morning and evening with Sunday school in between. At the young age of three I remember kneeling at my toy box and asking the Lord to forgive me of my sin and to come live in my heart.
I was the student who always received the Christian Character Award at the end of the school year. However, I have no real memory of taking hold of my faith and making it personal until my junior high years. I had youth group leaders who I adored- adored! I held on to every word they said to me. I have always been so grateful towards them for planting seeds and teaching me how to grow them in my own heart. They taught me what it is to invest in the lives of others, to remain faithful to the Lord, and how to reach out by just being there and loving.
In high school I spent time in Hungary and Ukraine. I walked through gypsy camps, held the hands of street kids, braided the hair of girls who would be soon released to the streets because they were turning 18 and the orphanages would no longer keep them. No one wanted to adopt them. There I sat with these orphans, with the love of a mother, father, sister, brother, and many friends supporting me.
Every time I think about those children's bare feet running through the streets of the gypsy camp, the baby bellies uncovered, and the insects crawling through the hair of the school aged children, my mind is quickly reminded of another picture- the pastor in the camp, hands and eyes lifted towards heaven, praising and thanking the Father.
Years have passed since that experience, and I still hold these images in my mind. Oh Lord, that my heart would be that thankful. How blessed am I to be sitting here, typing this on my laptop, sweatshirt on to keep me warm, with a full belly from a delicious meal.
Since then, the Lord has allowed me to walk alongside friends and family members who have walked down scary paths. I have cried, prayed, and listened to the heartache that many have had to endure. In the end and through it all, He has drawn me closer. He has shown me His heart for His people.
Even though the Lord has blessed me with so much, I have lied, I have made decisions that I will always regret, I have uttered words behind the back of others that should have never crossed my lips or my mind. I have judged far too many people's motives than I care to admit, I have chosen to walk the opposite direction of the Lord's leading, I have looked to myself for strength instead of Him...I could go on and on.
The point is, my story is filled with the grace and blessings of the Lord. I have graciously taken them and I have also refused them in order to follow my own desires.
But the Lord never ceases to forgive me.
He never ceases to love me.
He never ceases to watch over me.
He never ceases to take the blame for my sin.
This is not my story.
This is HIS story