My life is based on a few basic building blocks! Like this tower of blocks, it can be messy, unstable or dizzying, it may even have blocks pulled out, but the foundation never fails, never falls and always supports what I build on top of it! Here is my corner stone.
As I grew into my junior and senior year of high school, my best friend invited me to her church. They seemed focused on family. They seemed fun. They seemed to have what I was lacking. I went. And I went. And I went. I was involved in Campus Life but it wasn't reaching what I needed. Her church REALLY gets into outreach and missions. So, soon after I turned 18 in my senior year, I was baptized in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I didn't really know WHAT it was...but they loved me.
I headed to college. I had applied and gotten accepted to Taylor University and I was happy to go down there. I knew it was a place where I could continue on my quest for what I was missing. I went to the Mormon church down there twice. I was SO extremely uncomfortable that I never went back and I stopped reading my Bible since all I had with me was one with the Book of Mormon references and such. I could tell that this was NOT working for me and that I had been caught up in the novelty of having them reach out and actively try to attract me. I was lost. I was not connecting with my roommate. I went to my dorm mom and begged for help. She gave me a Bible that didn't have extra junk in it. I learned what praise and worship music was. I decided to stop sitting in my dorm and get involved! WOW! Eventually I met a man and we started dating. His parents were missionaries in Kenya! Talk about connected to God! I wanted the peace that he had! Unfortunately I was lazy and I thought he could just explain it once and BAM! Peace would come. Well, he loved me enough that he wouldn't let me build on his faith. He could have. He could have answered every one of my questions and my faith would have been just there. Instead, he was "mean". He led me through two books (Know What You Believe and Know Why You Believe from Paul Little) and he REFUSED to answer my questions! Sounds mean doesn't it! Worse, when we were studying he wouldn't hold my hand, put his arm around me or act like my boyfriend at all! He made me write all my questions on sticky notes and then we went through the book page by page and he guided me to the Bible for my answers! If I had a question about that Bible verse, he showed me to look at the related passages often listed and compare them until I found answers for myself! Frustrated I asked him why he was being so hard on me! The answer...he loved me and wanted to marry me but he wanted to first make sure that my faith was MY faith, not his. He wanted to make sure that I didn't base my relationship with my FATHER on my love and attraction to him! People, that is LOVE! And I don't just mean that Tim loved me, but I see that God knew exactly how lazy I was, exactly the type of challenge I needed and loved me enough to put the people in my life to lead me to Him in a LASTING way, even if it wasn't the EASY way.
It was about this time that I accepted Christ into my heart and really understood that peace! I don't really have a TIME. I know it was during the fall of 1993 and that it was in the little theater that used to be at Taylor University. I know it was gradual. I know that my faith became MINE!
A few years have passed since then (like 20 now!) and my life has changed, grown and had many ups and downs (including marrying that man and having two amazing children with him, finding him suffering from a brain tumor and subsequently dying....but my faith didn't die with him because he loved me enough to make it MINE not HIS! WOW! He really was amazing! but not nearly as amazing as my God!) and yet my faith has continued to grow!
For a long time I regretted my dip into the Mormon church but I have discovered that even though I don't understand everything in my past, God has a plan and some way, some how it molded me and helps me to be more than I would have been without it.
Is my life perfect because I KNOW I am God's child? Nope! Not even close! But I can say with certainty that I love God, I know He loves me! I know He sent His son, Jesus, to die on a cross for ME out of love. I don't have to understand all the stuff. I just have to wallow in His love! Doing so lets all of the other blocks in my life start to form and take shape. Holding firm and steady on this foundation block! His amazing love for me!
Do you wallow in His love in your life? If not, what is holding you back?
Just an FYI...even though I linked to Taylor and to the books that influenced me so....I have NO clue how to get money (even though I know it is possible) from referring people to sites like Amazon.com so if you go buy those books, I get nothing, but you might get the opportunity to find an amazing relationship with your loving Father in heaven!