You would think one born in a Christian home, the daughter of a Southern Baptist Preacher, would find Salvation early in life. And, for appearances sake that is exactly what happened. At the age of 9 years old, I walked the aisle of my church during an old fashioned revival service. I remember kneeling there crying while my father and others prayed around me. The one thing I don’t remember is ever praying myself. I don’t remember personally asking Jesus to be my Savior and Lord.
In my early teenage years I strayed from what I was taught. I wasn’t the worst of the bunch, but I surely wasn’t the best. I hung out with the wrong crowd. Used the wrong words. Those who did not know me would have never believed I was a Preacher’s Kid. I wasn’t the party child, but I wasn’t the Christ-like girl either. As the years passed I became more and more of the rebellious prodigal you might say. I didn’t want anything to do with church or with God. I wanted to be my own boss and do my own thing. It didn’t take to long for me to join the party scene. I was so looking forward to 21 and being a legal adult. Then everything would be as I wanted. However, God had other plans. Thankfully in all of my rebellion, my parents never gave up on me. At the age of 20, just a few months before my 21st birthday, I realized I was as lost as could be. Just like Prodigal Son in Luke 15, I found myself at the bottom. I found myself lost and alone, afraid of dying.
I remember well that Sunday morning, going to church, yet not feeling God’s presence or calling. I left empty, scared, alone and miserable. That’s why I was the first one at church that night. I spent the time in my car waiting for others to arrive, pleading and begging God not to leave me here like I was. I needed Him. I don’t know why I rebelled or how I came to be where I was but I knew I could not stay here any longer. All the things I had declared I didn’t want I now needed just as I needed air to breath.
The church service started with special singing. They sang a song about being at the bottom of life and Jesus pulling them out. That was me. That’s where I was. I had hit bottom with no way out. I needed a Savior. I left my seat during the middle of the song. Yes, I interrupted the service as I fell on the altar and began to cry out. “God, I need you! Take it all, everything I have and ever wanted, take it. Just give me You. I can’t live another day without You. God, please help me. Please don’t leave me like this. I need You! I need You and You alone!”
Jesus entered my heart that night. There were no bells and fireworks, just a sweet peace and a love I had never known before. And 27 years later, He is still here. I am now a Southern Baptist Preacher’s wife, a Christian Author and Speaker, a Women’s Ministry Leader and Sunday School Teacher. I love God with all of my heart. This God I didn’t need or want, is my Everything, my I AM. I am so in love with Him, I don’t want to live this life without Him. I can’t get enough of Him. He thrills me like no other. I stand in awe that He could love someone like me. He is my Always and Forever. He is my Constant and He is my Dearest Friend. He is my Father, and my Lord. Today, He has full control, and not I.
The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.