My parents raised me along with my two older brothers in Alabama. As in most southern households, we never missed a Sunday and supper never started without first saying grace. It would be fair to say conservative, christian values were interlaced in our day-to-day lives. Our mother encouraged us to follow Jesus and her walk with the Lord laid a foundation of faith in my life. As a child though, I struggled with establishing long, meaningful friendships and being almost 10 years younger than my siblings, this resulted in unavoidable loneliness.
In my teen years, we moved to Kansas where I found friends and acceptance. The mid-west was a welcome change for me—a fresh start and some of the best Mexican food I’ve ever had. I wish I could say that the next few years were smooth sailing. But that’s not what happened.
I began to follow the desires of my heart—seeking every ounce of acceptance the world had to offer. One messy choice after another, I lost my once sure footing. As I approached my twenties, I looked to men to fill me up, but as each guy sloshed into my cup a little more of me spilled out. Eventually, I was just like the whitewashed tomb described in Matthew 27—beautiful on the outside, but on the inside dead in my sin. I had exchanged the truth of God for a lie and compromised nearly every standard I’d been raised to uphold. I was being crushed by the weight of shame and emptiness in my life–and I wanted to be free. In despair, I cried out to the Lord and surrendered.
I would love to tell you there was an instant change in my life, but for me it was a slow progression over many years–a change that is still taking place now. God is constantly working on me and through the Holy Spirit revealing something new I have yet to learn. But today, I can confidently claim that I belong to the Lord–redeemed and free. After my surrender, God graciously sent me a loving, God-seeking husband and later two precious girls. As a young wife, I earned a business degree had prepared for a successful and lucrative human resources career. But on my way up the corporate ladder, I was unexpectedly laid off and found myself questioning what I really wanted out of life. I had been the breadwinner for the first several years of our marriage while Grant got his small retail business off the ground. I was hesitant to let go of the comfortable lifestyle my career had afforded us, but I began to recognize that my little toddler was becoming a young lady and my involvement in that process I felt had been insufficient. As much as I knew my daughter needed me, I had no idea God would take my role as a mama to grow and transform me. So prayerfully and faithfully, I reclaimed my God given role as a stay-at-home mom. Today, I take each day as it comes (one coffee-filled mug at a time) in God’s word, submitting to the Holy Spirit, and seeking to serve my family well.
18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value. 19 It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. 20 God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but now in these last days he has been revealed for your sake.
21 Through Christ you have come to trust in God. And you have placed your faith and hope in God because he raised Christ from the dead and gave him great glory.
1 Peter 1:18-21 NLT