Life Stories (226)
I was raised in a Christian home and made a decision for Christ when I was six years old. There was a ventriloquist performing a kids show at our church one Sunday evening. I invited a friend from school and we went with my family. At the end of the show, there was a call to accept Jesus into our hearts and my friend wanted to go to the front. He got up and my Mom whispered that I should go with him, as a friend should. I was too nervous and just watched him pray the prayer up front. It bothered me all night that I didn't have the courage to go with my friend, to give him support, to take a stand for Jesus. The next morning on the bus to school, as I was still thinking about what was upsetting me, I decided then that if I was going to call myself a Christian I needed to give Jesus all of me. I prayed the same prayer, asking Jesus to come into my heart and give me strength and courage to follow him. I have always tried to put God first in my life since that day and God has blessed me so far in so many ways. He has been with me on the other side of the world, through hurts and pains that I thought would end me, and through rejoicing and miracles that could only have come from him. I will choose to follow Jesus.
One of my favourite verses is Isaiah 54:10.
I was saved in 1976, baptized in 1983 and have been following the Lord ever since, growing into His likeness. I had the privilege of being one of the founding members of New Life church. I’m excited to become a part of the KGF family and forming close friendships. I have served in many ministries (YWAM, prayer team leader, healing ministries, etc.) and attended several schools of ministry. Presently, I am leading a Sozo group, a ministry of Bethel church in Redding CA.
I grew up in a family that was very active in the local church. My parents had become Christians about 2 years before I was born and were diligent in teaching me about their faith. I invited Christ into my life at the age of four.
My church family was a very important part of my life, as I did not grow up near grandparents or other relatives. I have many fond memories of the times we shared together as families in the church.
In my early teens, I rebelled against some of the rules that seemed so important according to the Christian community. During these times, I always felt God’s gentle reminder of how much He loved me and wanted the best for me. It kept me from getting into deeper trouble and prompted the desire to be obedient to Him. I prayed for a good friend that would be like-minded and encourage me to continue on this path. Soon after, I met a wonderful guy and we became great friends. In fact, he is my husband today. We have continued to seek God in our lives, marriage, and in raising our family, as well as being committed to our local church.
There are many ‘defining moments’ in my Christian journey. A significant one was after a child I had given up for adoption came back into my life. I decided to share the secret that I had kept for almost 19 years. Although I had been a Christian for many years, I experienced God’s grace in a very new and real way. Bringing my secret into the open allowed God to heal my wounds and shame.
I have continued to experience God’s grace in my life. Without His wisdom and love, I would not have the relationship I do with my husband and children. I am so thankful for all God has done and is doing in my life. I believe strongly in community and provoking one another to good works so that we may all share in the wonderful life God has for us.
I was raised in a non-churched home and until I became a teenager was actually quite ignorant of the religious significance of the annual statutory holidays and various events on the calendar. It was not until I had moved away from home that I first became aware of the influence of the Christian church in our world and community.
When I was attending college, I was invited to go to a Christian concert in a nearby city. While I was not searching for anything specific, the opportunity to go out with a group of acquaintances was appealing, so I agreed. It was at this concert that I was challenged to consider what I had been missing in my life. That night I also met the girl who became my wife. She had become a Christian at an early age and had answers to many of my questions. Her influence, combined with church attendance, opened up a whole new world that I had been missing entirely.
Shortly after, I attended a weekend youth retreat where I embraced the salvation call of God and began my ‘new’ life in Christ. Within the next year I married the girl I had met at the concert and committed to a small community church, where we started a family together. We moved many times to a number of different cities over the next 15 years and each time found a church in which we could learn, grow, and serve. Throughout those years my faith developed as I was confronted with different doctrines and personal beliefs, all of which helped to solidify my stand today.
Although I feel more established in my faith than at any point in the past, I also have come to see how frail my life still is; how much I personally need Jesus; and why continued adherence to biblical teaching, personal study, and communal fellowship of similar believers is essential to my faith journey. I see clearly how reliance on our human effort and strength yield nothing of real substance, and so, I remain steadfast in my commitment to become the person God planned for me and I rely solely on his direction for my life.
Presently, I continually re-affirm that Jesus is my Lord and Saviour and the ultimate guide for me through this world.
Both my parents believed in Jesus, so I learned about my Heavenly Father and Jesus when I was a child. I received Jesus as my Saviour and was baptized at about the age of twelve. This happened when I was at Bible camp. In my teens I kept walking away from Him. There were times when I felt God left me, but it was later that I realized I was the one who walked away from God and that he was always with me.
As I got older, the Spirit kept telling me that prayer was not enough. I thought it was enough, but later realized that it wasn’t. I needed to commit myself totally to live as Christ lived. There are times when I mess up, but I know that I have a God who loves me and is always with me. I’m always grateful for what Jesus did for me on the cross. He made it possible for me, a sinner, to be saved. I am also grateful the Holy Spirit is there to guide and direct me.
I know without a doubt that I am a child of God and that Jesus suffered and died on the cross for me and that because of his sacrifice I have Eternal life.
Since childhood, my favourite Bible verse has been John 3:16. In fact, I love the whole Epistle of John.
God’s love reaches out to me and others always. God paid dearly with the life of his only begotten son and Jesus accepted our punishment by dying on the cross for our sins. Because of this we can have Eternal life. It’s a joy to live with Jesus Christ daily. Through our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ we can experience love, peace, comfort, compassion, patience, and total joy.
Jesus is my redeemer and my friend.
I was born into a family that believed in God and His Church. We attended church most Sundays, but I learned from my Grandparents the true passion in living for Christ. During our visits, I witnessed my Grandfather reading his Bible and praying during devotionals. My Sunday school teacher was an amazing believer who taught us the true meaning of faith in God and the importance of prayer. When I was six years old, I gave my life to God.
As I was grew older, Christ was always in my life and I could see his blessings each day. My faith journey continued until my late teens. It was then that my heart for God changed and life became more about me and less about God. Even though each day was not focused on God, I always knew that no matter what I did, Christ was walking with me. I returned to God and His church after I was married and had children. I continued to grow in my faith and love for God.
As my life and career flourished, focus for God depleted and again, I stepped backwards in my faith. I put God second in my life next to power, greed, travel, importance to others, money, and self-reliance. Even though my main focus was not on God, I knew He was with me and continuously presented Himself when I was faced with situations involving ethics and prayerful heartfelt choices. I knew that no matter where I went or what I did, God was always with me and kept me safe.
Because of my self-centredness, my first wife and I divorced. My focus had been on making money to buy my family presents, when all they wanted was my presence. After this wake-up call, I re-established my faith-centred relationship with God. God was faithful to me and placed a wonderful lady in my life that I fell in love with and married. Maryann and I both knew that God needed to be the centre of our marriage. He would lead us forward in our faith journey as a couple and as individuals.
My life as a Christian has been a bit of a roller coaster. God not only carried me through struggles and uncertain times, but also walked with me through the good times. I no longer ask what God has done for me today, but instead I start each day praying and asking God what I can do for His Kingdom. During a conference in Edmonton (Breakforth) God asked me to give his blessings back to others in the form of tithes, talents, and time. I will continue to honour Him and His path for my life.
I was born into a poor, hard-working Roman Catholic family in a farming community. We never missed church on Sunday and prayed at bedtime. As a teenager I was very dedicated to being a good student, never touched liquor or drugs, and had a serving heart.
I understand now that the RC faith had roadblocks in developing a personal relationship with Jesus. But my Dad’s leadership in teaching morals, discipline, the importance of prayer, and the meaning of holy communion opened my heart to search for more meaning than ceremony, statues, and rote responses.
I married my high school sweetheart, an irregular church-goer, in a Protestant church. Alone in church most times with my three children, God led me to strengthen my faith. Besides working as a Dental Hygienist, I dedicated my time and energy to teaching kids in Sunday School and worship music, and for many years I organized the children’s programs at church.
Because my husband and I wanted different things, our marriage and my health collapsed. God had even placed a pastor next door, but we were blind to God’s beckoning! After a bitter divorce, I searched for The One who had held my hand during years of neglect and disappointment. I remember feeling His presence more than ever.
During that period, God placed a Godly man in my pathway. I married him (Mel) four years later. Together we sought to rebuild with Jesus as the centre of our lives. I had been baptised as an infant, but because I felt a strong desire to make a public statement about my Christ-centred life, I was re-baptised ten years ago.
Since that day, there has been no hesitation as to what choices I make and what paths I walk. With every word and action, I hold myself accountable to Christ. I have learned how to trust his love and to surrender to Him. I take every opportunity to make every moment “Christ-led” and I make my decisions based on “What would Jesus have done and what would he want me to do?” in every situation I encounter.
1 Thessalonians 5:14 “And we exhort you brothers. Warn those who are irresponsible, comfort the discouraged, help the weak, be patient with everyone.”
I've always believed in Christ, but have spent a lot of time walking away from Him. It was easier to live the life I thought I wanted if He wasn't in the picture. But He kept insisting on being with me throughout my life. After a few discussions, I caved in and told Him, "Okay, I give up! Let me see what you're all about." Bar none, it was the best decision I have ever made!
I was "christened" as an infant in the Catholic Church and as an adult I was baptized in the LDS church. When I was a kid, I was always afraid of God, never thinking of Him as my Heavenly Father. I thought he was just some mean old guy that scared the stuffing out of me! I was afraid that every little thing I did wrong would send me to hell. Not the kind, warm, and loving Father I wanted to meet!
Sadly, I continued to have those thoughts as an adult. But thankfully I came to believe, through much prayer and feeling/listening to the Holy Spirit, that the Father was not who I thought He was. I believe that God's message is a simple one. It draws us to Him, rather than scaring us away! I know that there is a right and a wrong in all things, but I also know that He knows we're going to mess up. If we just go to Him in repentance, He will forgive and always love.
I believe that my Father wants us all to know that it's so easy if we just keep things "simple" and quit trying trying to complicate things. Sometimes easier said than done, isn't it! My favourite verses in the Bible are John 3:16 and Psalm 23. They both fill my heart and soul and make me cry! I just need to say the first line of Psalm 23 and it fills me up with love, hope, and peace.
I came to Canada from China eight months ago. I wanted to make more friends and I also needed to improve my English. My friend Jenny invited me to come to KGF, where I met Millie and Jim. They help me to study the Bible. I had never read Bible before, and at first I did not understand anything. They were patient to teach me and help me study Bible. I realized that Jesus is the only way to God. Christ died for us. Jesus will forgive my sin and take away all my sin. He cleans my heart from every wrong. I asked Jesus to come into my life and guide me.
I was blessed as a child because I was taught how much God loves me. What a gift!At age 12, during summer bible camp, I gave my life to Christ. After receiving Christ I wanted to live my life to glorify His kingdom, and put my selfish ways aside.
Philippians 2: 3-4 (NIV) Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
P.S. Thanks to every one of you who has held open the church doors for myself and my 2 young children in their red wagon.