This spring marks my tenth spiritual birthday.
I grew up in the Catholic church, going to church on Sundays, going to CCD on Wednesday evenings. I read my bible, I prayed rehearsed prayers, I tried to be good.
During the spring of my senior year of high school, something changed deep inside of me.
I began attending our town's youth group--open to youth of all denominations. It was the welcoming grace of Pastor Joan and her husband Steve, and my fellow schoolmates that attended that intrigued this introvert to come back each week. It was the worshipping of Jesus through song that turned my heart to the heavens. It was the knowing that I could stop going through the motions and simply experience LOVE.
this LOVE Jesus has for us as His broken people
this LOVE we can share with other broken people
It was that spring of 2003 I accepted Christ into my life. The burdens of my past flew away as I asked Christ to forgive me and make me new.
It has been ten years.
Reflecting on these ten years, I would describe them as years of soaking up information on Christianity, being a compassionate person, and learning about who I am, redefined through Christ.
I would say these ten years has been comfortable.
Ugh, that seems kind of icky!
Jesus said there is a cost to being a true follower--that we must deny ourselves and take up his cross daily and follow him. We must lose our lives for him.
We aren't fully living out the gospel of Christ if we are fully comfortable, are we?
People become great in God's sight as they sincerely and unpretentiously look away from self to revere him. If we are spiritually alive, we should be busy proclaiming the kingdom of God. I don't know about you, but that makes this introvert uncomfortable.
Looking ahead to my next ten years of being committed to Christ, I want to be the hands and feet of Jesus. I want to suffer for the glory of God.
If I truly believe in what the bible teaches, I will say, "Here I am Lord, send me!", because I know that God will provide what I need--he has an overwhelming love for us!
God wants me to love others so much that I go to extremes to help them.
God wants me to trust him so completely that I am unafraid.
I am committed.
Something is wrong when our lives make sense to unbelievers. ~Francis Chan