"Live your life in such a way that those who know you but don't know God will come to know God because they know you."
Those are powerful words and quite challenging to live by but it has become my life motto. I grew up in a Christian home, always going to church. I became saved one Sunday at Sunday school when I was 5. For being so young, I can remember so much about that day. The lesson our teachers gave us; being asked if anybody wanted to ask Jesus to come live in their heart; being the only person who raised my hand that day; going out in the hall and talking with my teacher to make sure I really understood-as much as a 5 year old can understand-what it meant to ask Jesus into your heart; praying and asking Him to come into my heart; and the sheer excitement after I prayed knowing I had Jesus in my heart-forever! I couldn't wait to find my mommy and daddy and tell them "I asked Jesus into my heart!"
Being 5 and continuing to grow up in the church, God protected me from many things and situations I could have found myself in. But I didn't really being to truly grow in my relationship with Him until we moved to Oklahoma in 1997. It was a very, very difficult time in my life. But thankfully, I got plugged into a good youth group and everything changed after going to summer camp one year. It's interesting, though, because although I began to really grow in my relationship with Him during high school, I certainly see times in my life where I put God on the backburner and let life get in the way. I became too focused on myself and what I wanted to do. While He was always a part of my life, He hasn't always been my life. Until the last few years....
Becoming a parent has changed me in so many ways! I have experienced God's love for me in brand new, incredible ways. The love I have for Collin and Emma is so very intense and yet God reminds me constantly that not only does He love them so much more than I even do, but He loves ME so much more than I can truly understand. It's truly uncomprehensible at times! So very incredible!
Being a parent is very humbling! Especially as your baby grows and begins to mimick you. Wow, have my eyes been opened to so many areas of growth opportunities in my life!! Yikes! One of the biggest things that has been in the forefront of my mind is obedience...and obedience right away, the first time. We work on this every day, all day with Collin. I have been convicted so many times when I tell Collin "you need to obey mommy the first time." Do I obey God the first time? How can I expect Collin to obey me right away when so often I don't obey God right away? If I want to be a good remodel for my kids, I need to live exactly what I'm teaching to them. God has given me many opportunities to obey Him, the first time. :)
So I did, in a big way recently. A few months ago, I felt very strongly led by the Lord to ask my neighbor if she'd like to do a Bible study with me. For some silly reason, I was so nervous to ask her this but I couldn't shake God's leading for me to ask her. So, I did. And she enthusiastically answered Yes! and immediately asked if she could invite a friend of hers to join us. I was so excited and of course said Yes! So, the three of us began meeting on Tuesday nights, studying His word. It has been such a huge blessing for me and for them. They are both new to the faith and can't get enough of studying God's word. And neither can I!!Within the last few weeks, we have started studying Ruth and have added 3 more girls to our study! What a huge blessing and privelage it is to see God moving in my life and in others lives!
Last Tuesday at our Bible study, I was reminded again how very important it is for me to seek God everyday and live for Him and to let Him live through me. We were discussing a particular passage in Ruth and my neighbor was sharing something with the group I had said to her months and months ago, likely even years ago, that had literally changed her mindset and life. Wow!! Talk about being humbled!! At first, I honestly did not remember what I had said to her and was praying it was something that would bring God glory. It was such a good reminder to "Live your life in such a way that those who know you but don't know God will come to know God because they know you."
I pray this is true in my life. I pray that my day to day life always points others to Christ. I pray I am love because He is love. I pray that when people see me, whether in the aisle at Target or the aisle at church, that they don't see me but rather see Christ through me.