I still have a long way to go, but man, my God has built me up and brought me so far from the person I was before I knew him. While I know it is important not to dwell on our past or get bogged down from the guilt of mistakes we made, I think its good to reflect on the journey. God has done works in me that are truly amazing. I will share a couple of the transformations below.
1. I was conformed to the world: I blended in perfectly with the world around me. I floated along on its corrupt current without a concern for where I was headed. My identity and self worth came from how I stacked up to the images I saw in magazines and on MTV. I listened to music that was hyper-sexual and obscene, but I was so numb to the messaging that it didn’t faze me. I tried to fit into a place God created me to stand out from.
The word of God says: “Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what Gods will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
2. I felt empty: There was always an emptiness that I tried to fill up with things that never worked. Attention from guys, accomplishments, compliments, popularity, excessive drinking: none of these things could touch the Jesus sized whole in my heart.
The word of God says: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
3. I was lost in the dark: I had no direction, no hope, and no help. My loved ones worried, as I seemed to be on a downward spiral I couldn’t escape. I was running after things I thought would help me, when in reality I was only digging a deeper hole for myself. I tried to win a beauty pageant so I would feel more worth and value. I thought if I became famous I would be happy and content. I looked for acceptance and love in relationships with guys that were so lost themselves they only pulled me further off track.
The word of God says: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105 and “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts in on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ Luke 15:4
I was the one lost sheep out of 99 that Jesus went searching for. He found me and with great joy he brought me back home. Reflecting on my journey as a daughter of Christ working to find her place in His kingdom reminds me of everything God has done for me. Even when I was living a life of selfishness and sin, he was fighting for me so he could bring me back home where I belong. I now can say I have peace, joy and contentment, even in hard seasons of life, because I know whose I am, and that my God is working everything out for my good.
My prayer is that my story may be a testament to others. That they may be able to find peace and joy through the only true source, their savior, Jesus Christ.
“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14