To Read on the Journey

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

25 Years

"I think the most important thing that happens within Christian spirituality is when a person falls in love with Jesus...
 I know our culture will sometimes understand a love for Jesus as weakness. There is this lie floating around that says I am suppose to be able to do life alone, without help, without stopping to worship something bigger than myself. But I actually believe there is something bigger than me, and I need for there to be something bigger than me. I need someone to put awe inside me; I need to come second to someone who has everything figured out." 
Blue Like Jazz 
by Donald Miller

For 25 years I've done life with Jesus.

For 25 years today. 

Nothing is worth more than this day. 

On June 19th, 1988, I was saved from abandonment, lies, defeat, curse, unworthiness... death.  I came to Life.
In late spring of 1988 when I was 14 a friend invited me to Hume Lake Christian Camp, but because my mother worked as a waitress, camp wasn't financially possible (We got the free cheese. Those of you who got the free cheese know what I'm talking about). However, one week before camp the same friend called to say a girl had cancelled, her spot for camp was paid in full, and the church (River Oak Grace) wanted me to go in her place.

I honestly can't say I wanted to go to a Christian camp.  If there was a God I had a question for Him, "Why did you give me this life, I've done nothing to deserve it?"
From birth my dad had rejected me, and over the years has made it clear to me that I am not his daughter (He was a drug user for 27 years. In 1998 he was arrested, and a year later committed to a state hospital. He is Bipolar-Pschitzoaffective).

 At the age of 2 1/2 a routine weekend visit to my paternal-grandparents turned into a 3 year stay when my teenage mother decided she couldn't care for my younger sister and I.  When I was 6 she returned for us. In the 13 years I lived with my mother she was married, divorced, engaged, separated, married, divorced, engaged, separated, married, divorced, married.  I've had 7 "dads."

The message repeatedly displayed to me by my parents and "step-parents" was that I was not wanted.  Their rejection, abandonment, selfishness and neglect conveyed that I was unworthy of love. 

So... I went to camp because I wanted a week break from it all   
Hume Lake was beautiful. I was enlivened by the activities, games, being part of a team, 3 meals a day, singing, and mostly by the people pouring their Life into me. 

Away from the defeat, I was breathing and living for the first time in my then 14 years of life.
That week the speaker, Steve Russo, seemed to be speaking to only me as he shared that "God is a Father who will never leave you or forsake you," and  "nothing can separate us from the love of God." (Duet 31:6 & Romans 8:38-39).  I wanted a father Who would stay and never leave. I wanted someone whose love I could not lose. 

So on June 19th,1988 I took my first steps toward my Father God.

And nothing is worth more to me than this day. This day changed the entire course of my life. 

Praise the God Who Saves! 

It has been quiet a journey these 25 years ("Journey" is my favorite word, it's meaning is "to travel from one place to another.") Not easy, but good.

And Oh, how I love the LORD my God!
And again I have one question for Him,
"Why did You give me this Life, I've done nothing to deserve it?!!"

"Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you.
  I will praise you as long as I live, 
and in your name I will lift up my hands." 
Psalm 63:3-4


Live in Peace,


Gina @ Not So Random Stuff said...

beautiful. happy new life day! it truly is the best journey to walk side by side with Jesus!

Kathleen said...

Happy birthday! May you continue to be amazed by the many ways the Lord shapes your heart towards Him.

The Writer Chic said...

My dad keeps a plaque in his office that says "nothing is worth more than this day." I've never asked him what his story behind that saying is, but I'm SO glad you shared YOUR story!

Ginger said...

I love, love, love this post. Your story is powerful.

{cuppakim} said...

happy {belated} {spiritual} birthday, my friend :) i'm so glad Jesus called you HIS!

christina said...

i. love. this.

Tegan Aubrie | Twelve13 said...

Sister. What a beautiful story. God uses all things for His glory, doesn't he? Thank you for sharing this!

Linda Z said...

Happy, Happy Silver Anniversary! Your faith and story always inspire me!!

Miss you. Hugs!

Jodi said...

Oh I love this! What an amazing testimony. I was reading through some of your past posts too and read the quote from C.S. Lewis'the Silver Chair... I don't think I ever got to that book. Just reading the paragraph made me choke up though, awesome!