What was life like before you met Jesus?
Before I met Jesus I looked to the things of the world to satisfy me whether it was drinking or partying. I looked in relationships for love and belonging. I had very little self-control in my life. I would give in to any pleasure that tempted me. I wanted people's validation and I thought I would find my validation in pleasing people. No matter how many people I pleased or how much I partied I still felt as though I was missing something.
How did you meet Jesus?
I grew up in the church, but I never truly understood the significance of the gospel. Starting of my senior year of high school I turned away from God and started living my life how I thought I should. God kept sending people my way to encourage me to get back into my relationship with Him, but I kept ignoring the people He sent. I finally agreed to start going to church with one of my friends from college who kept asking me to go. I started reading a book about the gospel my pastor gave me. God used this book to open my eyes to how much He loves me and wants me and how amazing the gospel of Jesus Christ is. I stepped back into my relationship with Him. A verse that has encouraged me during my walk with God is Proverbs 24:16, “for the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity.” This reminds me that my standing with God doesn't depend on my actions.
After being saved by Jesus, what is your life like now?
After I stepped into a relationship with God I noticed I cared a lot less about what people thought of me. I don't care about the validation of other people, because I'm satisfied in what God thinks of me. I had more self-control and it was easier for me to say no to drinking and partying. I went from drinking 2-3 a week and smoking weed every other day to stopping both drinking and smoking. Most importantly the void I had felt finally was filled. I was satisfied in my relationship with Christ. Romans 4:1-4 helps to remind me that I am justified, because of my faith in God. “What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due.” No amount of works will save me, but what Christ did on the cross is what saves me from death.