I’ve always loved the verses found in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, even before I could understand what they really meant. Now that I’m older, these words still hold a profound place in my heart as a reminder that God has a plan and purpose for my life. Through all the bad and good times in my life, God was working in the background, molding me to be the person I am. Even today, He’s still working in me. Each season of my life is another stepping stone closer to God and His purpose for me.
I grew up in a Christian household learning about God, and was going to church every week, but never learned nor desired anything about God. I would try to read, pray, worship, but never found a real relationship with God. During my school years, I would get into trouble a lot, and would hang out with the wrong crowds, which caused a lot of problems. If there was one word that would describe what I was looking for that caused most actions that I had done during that time…it was attention.
As a child I was raised in Catholicism and I was taught to know God through a priest. I did not know God’s love growing up even though he was watching out for me. Living in a broken home, I always felt lonely. I had a step father who was kind to me but abusive to my mom. After my parents divorced, I was left without a father.
This story is our story because God extends grace to all who come to Him, no matter where we come from. He found us at different places in life and pursued us with His unending love. And because of His grace, He brought Matt and I together for a beautiful life and marriage. We hope that all of this can point to who’s at the center of our lives – Jesus!
We met a student at Northwest Vista College last year – she had been faithful to small group, but not very open or vulnerable with her Small Group Leader or friends in small group. There were a lot of walls built up in her heart and mind, so she didn’t allow people to know the hard things she’d gone through or the choices she was making.
I accepted Jesus Christ in the 1970s, after my sister in law became a Christian. Then, my husband and children started attending a Baptist Church, were I was baptized, but then I started to slack off. I realize I needed Jesus in my life after I was going through so many trials, illnesses and murder.
I wasn’t raised a Christian I never knew much about Jesus or church. I came to this country and was introduced into drugs and alcohol and quickly began a life of criminal activity and a life of hurting those around me emotionally and hurting strangers physically.