My Personal Testimony
The day was like any other, really. I did not know that my life was about to change, or that this day would become a day apart from all the others in my life. I was tired, exhausted: I had a new baby at home, and an older toddler to boot! Two weeks before I had given birth to my second son, and was now in the doctor’s office to have my baby’s first wellness checkup. I was watching TV, waiting for my name to be called. The show was a well-known Christian evangelical program, and I really was not interested at all, not being a Christian. In fact, at the time I was actually rolling my eyes at the ludicrous ideas.
The program was featuring someone who was calling upon Jesus to heal people with illnesses. Now, I admit to believing that Jesus had been real (this is documented history, and I am nothing if not practical) but surely did not think that Jesus was going to be helping anyone with their health. The person on the show started telling the viewers to just ask for Jesus to heal them, and feel the hands of Jesus upon them. I thought to myself, very mockingly and sarcastically, well let’s see Jesus cure my depression. (I have suffered from depression and anxiety for many years.)
Suddenly, I felt a pressure on my shoulder, exactly as it would feel if someone had their hand there. In an instant, a pinched nerve that had caused me terrible pain constantly for 5 years was gone. Just gone- nothing there but a slight tingling feeling and the pressure lingering for a minute or so.
I felt almost like the breath had been taken out of me, breathless and as if the world had shifted. I remember the person on the show again around this point, saying something about accepting Jesus to heal us and I followed along with what they were saying. A moment later, a nurse called me in, and I went into the room. My examination really was a blur, I felt like I wasn’t even really aware of what was happening. I was sure that I had had some awful problem, like a stroke, that was causing this to happen (along with my anxiety, did I mention I have hypochondria?!)
The next few days, no matter how much I focused on it, I could not make the pain come back. And I tried, really, I wanted it back at this point. I was afraid, and so confused. I knew instantly when this happened that Jesus had healed me. I knew that this was God’s work, but I had mocked Him, not just this one time but for much of my life. I did not believe at all in Christianity.
My religious upbringing was not that unusual by today’s standards. One parent, my dad, was Christian. My mom had been brought up with some church, but inconsistently and I think some early church experiences were maybe even unpleasant, so she did not push it on me. I grew up going to church on Easter only, so there was not a strong religious upbringing. I liked some things about church, but found the preaching often dull. I really did not know much at all about Christianity, and whenever I asked my friends questions about their churches I found they did not have any answers. This always bothered me, and when I was twelve, I started researching religions. By the time I was fourteen I fully considered myself decided: I was wiccan. I did not consider this a phase, but the real path for me.
This is difficult to talk about now, I spent so many years believing in it (though following it rather inconsistently, mainly whenever I needed something.) Still, it felt like a big part of my life, and not one I ever had any desire to change. I did like it, and considered it true and very natural. Now, I have spent most of the time since God called me not talking about my past. At first I was very confused and went back and forth trying to reconcile my old religion with what God was moving in my heart. It took the better part of a year before I was truly comfortable with being a Christian. I felt plagued by doubts and disbeliefs, but in His grace God drew me bit by bit towards Him.
God moved me to read books and even blogs by strong and faithful Christians, as well He used other ways to bring His love to me (such as through listening to Christian music, especially important I think, as I have always loved music.) He brought me to church about a year after He first called me, and I am so happy to worship in the same church I went to as a child for Easter. The pastor now is very inspirational, and his messages are always helpful in relating God’s Word to today’s issues.
Growing in my path has been a slow journey, and although it started rather bumpy due to my doubts, God has always been merciful to me. He knew in my weakness that I would need a patient guide, and (as He always does) provided what was needed. In his everlasting grace, God has not forsaken me for my moments of disbelief, and has continually brought me closer and closer to Him.
In this past year, the second one since first knowing Him, God has moved much in my heart. I have begun to determine to live the life that He would have me to. I am working to grow in godliness, so that I might know Him more and have His light shine through me. One of my greatest passions now is conquering my fears of evangelism. I desire to spread His Word and Truth, the knowledge of Christ to those who do not know of Him. I can truly say that our God is the Living God, and I am surely blessed to have been saved by Him.