Friday, September 17, 2010

Testimony: God's Grace Is For All Who Will Accept It

My growing up years were turmoil for me, because my dad was in the Navy, we had to do a lot of moving.  I would say that I went to 5 different Elementary schools, one Jr. High school, and two High schools.  For an already shy, and reserved person, having to start over all the time was quite difficult.  My parents, for a good part of my growing up years were not Christian.   My parents sent my brother and I, and for a while, my sister, to Sunday School, and Vacation Bible School for a long time. And, although I memorized some scripture and participated in all the activities, it didn't really mean anything to me.  I really wasn't sure there was a God, and I really didn't know much about who this God was anyway.

When I was about 11 or 12, I played on a basketball team. I wasn't very good so I didn't get to play a lot. I was frustrated, because I wanted to play.  I didn't want to be a bench warmer.  I started making bargains with God. I would say "if you let me play more in the next game, then I'll believe in you", and in the next game I would get to play more. I did this several times, but I just wasn't sure yet. I still didn't really know who this God was, or why I would need to believe in him in the first place.  During this time my parents started going to church with us regularly. I became involved in the youth group at this church. I started to learn more about God and what he did for me, but I still didn't understand what he was all about, but I did  become more aware that I was being tugged toward Him.  Why?  I didn't understand though.  So he died on a cross for my sins.  What have I done that is so bad that I would need him to die for me.  I didn't understand that he died to cleanse me from the human condition called sin, that I was born with from the beginning.

When I started Jr. High School I started the two most difficult years of my life.  I was used to being made fun of, because I was used to always being the new kid, but what happened these two years was more than I could handle.  I was abused physically, mentally/emotionally, and sexually by my peers, and I didn't know how to deal with it.  I decided to put God to the test again.  Ok, I'll try turning the other cheek, and see what happens.  I didn't see any fruit from this, and I was in tears almost every day, not to mention the English class in the 8th grade that I almost failed because I couldn't deal with what was going on. 

The Summer after my 8th grade year, in August of 1977 my parents sent me to a Christian Camp called River Valley Ranch.  Not only was it refreshing after such a hard two years of Jr. High School.  I actually felt loved by the staff, and the other kids.  They actually accepted me.  God was really drawing me now, and I was beginning to understand the depravity of my human condition, which made it necessary for a savior.  One evening at camp I invited Jesus into my life.  I remember it being such an emotional release, that I cried, which is something I never allowed myself to do in public before this time.  I really didn't understand what I'd done, and no one was there to disciple this new babe in Christ, so I didn't grow much after this time.

When I was 18, we moved out to the Seattle area and I became involved in a church where I learned that I needed to do more if I wanted Jesus to be more than just an acquaintance. I needed to read the Bible and I needed, most of all, to talk to Him. I needed to pray. I learned how to praise the Lord also. I started to do all of these things, and I was daily trying to get closer to the Lord, because I wanted more than what I had.  This is when I believe I really started to grow and know Jesus as not just my savior, but as my friend and my Lord.

I wont say that everything has been easy since I met the Lord, but I will say that it would have been a lot harder without him there to come along side me and help me through.

16 comments:

  1. Sounds like a slam dunk to me...you are not on the bench anymore, Julie, but in the life of the Best Owner, Coach, and Cheerleader. Hip Hip Hooray!

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  2. Thank you Sandra,
    You are right. I'm not on the bench any more. If I were still on the bench, I wouldn't be doing what I am supposed to be doing as a follower of Christ... None of us are bench sitters, ummm I mean none of should be bench sitters, nor should we want to be. God wants us in the game.

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  3. Hi Julie,
    Thanks for sharing your testimony. Our God is so generous in mercy and kindness. I'm so thankful that He "sought me, and bought me, with His redeeming blood" too. Hope you have a great Lord's Day tomorrow.

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  4. Thank you Cathy for your comment. God is definitely generous in mercy, and kindness. I hope you have a great Lord's Day tomorrow also.

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  5. Good spiritual blog.
    I’ve enjoyed looking over your blog. I came across it through another blog I follow. I am now a follower of yours as well. Feel free to look over my blog and perhaps become a follower of it also.

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  6. Hi Julie,

    I found this post an open and honest testimony of the love and grace of God experienced by a believer, as well as some of the challenges you faced in your relationship with Christ.

    This is my first visit to your blog but I look forward to reading more of what the Lord shares through you.

    Blessings and peace.

    MTJ

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  7. Thank you all so much for viewing my blog, and inviting me to your blog. I look forward to reading what God has to say through you also. May God Bless You All...

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  8. Hi Julie,

    Always remember, no matter what happens or what negative thing anyone says to us or about us, we are beautiful daughters of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We are virtuous women, holy, righteous, blameless, more precious than rubies, and highly favored!

    May God continue to bless us as his beloved daughters. I, too, have gone through quite a bit over the past 20 years, but God has given me great wisdom and strength to come through it victoriously. We wouldn't have anything meaningful to write if we didn't experience pain in our lives. It's through our writing that will heal and encourage people and tell of God's great love for us! Amen!

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  9. Thank you Judith,
    I will keep writing for me, and for others. God is so Good and I'm learning to lean on His Love for me...because it is so great.

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  10. I really enjoyed reading the posts on your blog. I would like to invite you to come on over to my blog and check it out. God bless, Lloyd

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  11. Thank you Lloyd,
    I will definitely go and check out your blog.

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  12. Amen Julie. I was 33 years old when the Lord got a hold of me. Like you, my life has not always been easy but I fear to think of what it would have been without Him. Not only is He there in good times and bad but He will be there when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. PTL

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  13. Thank you Ron,
    It's nice to know, without a doubt, that The Lord will be their no matter what we are going through. PTL...:-)

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  14. Thank you sharing this with me Julie!! it means a lot!

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  15. Your Welcome Darva. and Thank you for reading. :-)

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