Freedom in Jesus

There’s a certain freedom in getting to know Jesus. If you’re like me and did not grow up in the church, did not grow up knowing God, then this probably sounds completely foreign to you. It might even leave a bitter, uncomfortable taste in your mouth and down in your soul.

I’ve been there. Trust me.

There is a lot of misconception when it comes to the idea of who Jesus is and what a Christian is. Honestly, I used to think of Jesus as this hippie, always loving and joyful to everyone. So I when I read stories in the Bible where he was angry and ready to c

 

The church was always meant to be a hospital for the broken, not a place for the prideful and rich. Jesus even said His power works best in weakness. And if you’ve read my story, heard my testimony, you know I stand by that wholeheartedly.

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My Story

A lot of people have told me I should write a book but I always brushed off the idea because I never felt my life was interesting enough to talk about, much less fill an entire book with. However, I’m hoping this blog will suffice. Within the past few months, I have felt driven to share my story – and it’s probably the best love story I could ever tell.

Most stories start with a boy meeting a girl. My story? Well that’s no different. This particular boy I met had turned my world upside down, without either of us really realizing it, like a lot of first loves tend to do. He was sweet, caring and easy on the eyes – how could I not get caught up in all that he was? Time passed and in the blink of an eye, the rug was pulled out from underneath me, and it was over. The cold was a relentlessly bitter and harsh contrast to the personal sun I had gotten used to having around.

It was during that time of loss and heartbreak that I realized the only one who had been there and seen everything as it was happening, and knew how I felt, was God. So, He was the one I turned to in my darkest moment. I turned to Him with tear stained cheeks and a shattered heart and He helped me to dig myself out of the pit.  When I felt the most alone, the most hurt, the most broken, He got down in the pit of it with me and allowed me to see the light in the dark by turning a broken heart into one that’s beautifully and unconditionally loved. He gave me the peace and comfort I so desperately needed. So, trust me when I say that I’m living proof that His power works best when you’re at your weakest.

He saw me at my worst and said, “I want her.”

For the record, I’m trying to not sound “too preachy” or force you to open a Bible. Heck, I didn’t even know who Jesus was until eleven months ago, and I’m still learning. I did not grow up “in the church” like a lot of Christians; there was no Vacation Bible school in the summer nor was my dad a second generation pastor.  I was raised Catholic but never once opened a Bible while I sat in that pew every Sunday. Catholic mass felt like an obligation because I was never told who Jesus was, or what He did for humanity; what He did for me. There’s a world of difference between doing something because you want to and doing something because you’re told you have to.

Around this time that I was feeling completely lost and broken, the passing of Christina Grimmie occurred. I had followed her career since discovering her in 2010, and from watching her family’s live video stream of the funeral service, I heard about Christina’s genuine love for Jesus which was the final push in getting me to want to know who this Jesus dude was.

What I discovered? It was life changing. The thing about God is, He hates our sin but doesn’t hate us. To quote Pastor J.S. Park, “God is too just and pure to allow sin to go unpunished, but He loves us too much to make us pay for it. That’s why Jesus had to die.”

If you’re reading this and still not sure about this whole “Christian” thing or who this Jesus guy is, that’s completely fine. I’m not writing this to try and convince you to come to church with me, or to bow your head and talk to God. Honestly, if there’s anything I’ve learned in these past eleven months, it’s that the Christian life is far from easy. It’s a lot easier to be a non-believer and do whatever you want. However, I know who I am without Jesus – someone with a lot less patience, more of a temper, and more inclined to view the world in a cynical way. But with Him, I’m able to allow the wounds of my past to turn into scars; I’m able to forgive those who have hurt me and show compassion for those who, in the world’s eyes, don’t deserve it.

And in the moments of brokenness and loneliness and feeling like not enough, it’s a lot easier to face things with God on my side. I am nowhere near perfect; I still have days where I stumble. Just a girl full of wounds pieced back together with a lot of grace and love.

However like Paul, I will gladly boast in my weakness because without Jesus, I know exactly how weak I am. Jesus is constantly working in me, and it’s something that makes me excited, because for the first time, I’m actually embracing change.