I was baptized and shared my story with the Forest Grove Attridge congregation in December 2016. Now is a chance to retell my story… Thank you, the one reading, for taking the time to read what I have written. I pray that God may use my story in some way to refresh you and remind you of eternal Love.
1) When did Jesus first get your attention?
My parents led me to Jesus gently and continuously. They embodied the Love of Christ and modelled forgiveness and generosity and faith. I love them and am so thankful for them. My parents set me up for Jesus to get my attention when they sent me to summer camp (Ranger Lake Bible Camp) when I was 11. One night in the chapel, I cried as Jesus asked me, through the words of the camp speaker, “Do you believe in me?” … Or was I on the fence, neither believing nor disbelieving? Was I like Peter, not willing to say who I follow?
2) What is a faith marker in your life?
When I was 21, I went to bible school for 9 months in Sweden and again Jesus got my attention. Those 9 months are a huge faith marker in my life. After getting over the feeling that my time in bible school was just a few weeks of holiday… I started to feel lonely and tired of being with strangers. But I wasn’t alone. I eventually built deep friendships with other young people there and hours and hours of bible reading and listening to lectures led to an amazing result. I experienced something I never had before… life in a larger community that follows and learns and seeks to know the Eternal God together. I learned about history behind Christian teachings and traditions and got a very small glimpse of how vast in time and space is the Work of God. My faith in God deepened and my confidence in myself grew!
3) What is Jesus doing in your life right now?
Now I am trying to regain that confidence and focus on today, leaning on God as my foundation and the lamp to my feet. While I struggle with uncertainty about what faith in God looks like and how to act as a Christian in a multi-faith, diverse world, and while I fail to create structure in my life (sometimes trying to complete my Master’s degree at home feels like I’m only sliding backwards…), I can’t forget how Jesus is bringing so much good into my life! I’m part of a small group which has met consistently throughout the past year (many, many virtual meetings). All of the women in this group are a huge blessing to me! I also have experienced a refreshment and revival in my relationship with God because of my loving partner, Tyron, who has brought prayer and faith into my life in a new way.
4) What is a favourite scripture and why?
My favourite scripture is Matthew 11:28-30
“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”
This verse helps me release my burdens (I typically cry it out), reminds me of the gentle love of Jesus, and teaches me to humble myself by taking up Jesus’ yoke.
5) Why do you love our church?
I’ve experienced love from others here. I’ve been able to worship God in many ways here. I’ve had opportunities to serve and learn more about others. And so… I think our church is alive in Christ… and doing the work to remain so. May the Holy Spirit be guiding us always! Amen.