Saturday, May 7, 2016

Growing in Grace

I am a Reformed Christian.  "What is that?" or "What does that mean?"  you may ask.  Simply this:  I believe that God chooses whom He will save, and that man has absolutely nothing to do with his own salvation.  I baptize my children in direct obedience to God, believing that the covenant He has with my husband and I also extends to our children.  I know full well that I, in my depraved, sinful ways would have never chosen God.  He chose me to be His child, and he loves and cherishes me.

This is my Coming to Jesus story.

I was born to an unwed, 17-year-old mother in 1991.  She knew that she was unable to care for me, so in a selfless, loving act;  she put me up for adoption.  Through God's grace, I was placed in a wonderful, Christian home.  We were raised in the Baptist church.  At the age of 5, I prayed the "Sinner's Prayer" and received a pin commemorating my salvation day.    At age 7 I was baptized.  I thought I was ok, I was going to heaven now.  I did what everyone expected me to do. I quoted Scripture and parroted all the Christian words I was supposed to say, but it wasn't MY faith.  I was living a lie, because I honestly didn't truly believe.

Fast-forward 9 years.  I was almost 16-years-old.  My family went to church one Sunday, and on the way home my parent's  announced that we were no longer members.  My older brother, father, and mother had recently "discovered" Reformed Theology and were slowly converting.  I didn't care...all I was going to church for was to see my friends.  I became angry at God.  Why did He take away all of my friends?  Why were my parents being so ridiculous?  Who cares about theology?  

On one October day in 2007, I remember being in my room when I suddenly felt this overwhelming feeling of God pulling me towards Him.  I fell to my knees and began to pray.  I confessed my sins, I confessed my living a lie, I confessed my anger at Him, I begged His forgivness for living in His name while not believing in Him.  I could no longer ignore His prodding.  I was His, and it was time I gave my life fully to Him, and to sharing Him with the world.   I felt a feeling of total peace and contentment wash over me.

From that day, I began to grow.  Less than a year later, I was married.  We began attending a Reformed Church of the United States (RCUS) and my knowledge of the Reformed faith grew.  I was learning things all over again, learning about my faith.

Now, 7 years later I am STILL learning!  Lately I have dived into the Word to learn more about the WHY to my faith.  WHY do I believe this?  WHY should I believe this?  HOW can I help others know God and live rightly before Him?  HOW do I share my faith.  I am owning my faith, and loving my God.

My hope and prayer is that through my faith and testimony other will turn to Him, the wonderful Savior;  the Author and Finisher of our faith.  He is God.   He chose me. I am loved by God.  Jesus died on the cross to save ME.  He is in control of everything in the world.  And THAT, my friends, is the most amazing, most comforting thought.

*For more information on Reformed Christianity, please visit Ligonier Ministries

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