Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Re-dedication

This is my story.
Ever since I can remember, I have loved the Lord. When I was younger, maybe in the 4th grade, I asked Jesus to come into my heart. I was young, but I know that I wanted to live for the Him.

My parents always took us to church. We went on Sunday mornings, evenings, Wednesday nights, part of the GA's, my momma sang in the choir and even worked with the children's choir (of course, my brothers and I were part of that). If the doors were opened we were there. We were raised in a Christian home and taught right from wrong. I may not have always done the right things (fighting with my brothers, not saying prayers at night, not learning my memory verse for Sunday morning (you would get a sticker if it was said correctly), or talking during church with my buddy (Aimee Tyndall!), but I knew that God loved me. He knew me inside and out, my flaws, and my faults.

My walk with the Lord has been very rocky. I have often thought that I knew what was best for me. I did not study the word, have fellowship with the Lord, did not tithe, or often did not even attend church. Those years were very rough for me. It seemed like I could never catch a break. Sometimes I would get mad at God, thinking why would things not work out for me. I would struggle with relationships, had troubles with school, and my priorities were very out of order. After graduation from college and moving back home with my parents, some things in my life started to come together.

My MamMaw and PapPaw moved here from Louisiana. (This was definitely the Lord sending two angels to my aid). I did start to go to church more, and I even joined the choir. I really thought that I could just jump right back into a Christian life. Easier said than done. I was constantly reminded of the rocky road that I had been on. I had friends at church thinking I was a wonderful Christian girl who could never do wrong and then my friends who I had had for years looking at me each weekend, probably thinking she is fake. I was constantly Wondering if I died at that very moment, would I go to heaven. I just was not very sure. I knew what I needed to do, was re-dedicate my life to the Lord and confess to Him all of my wrong... once I did that, I know that my past would be forgotten and I could start a new.

Really, I could not do that. I was to embarrassed of what other people in the church would say when they saw me walk down the aisle at church... here I was in the choir, helping with children's choir, and friends with many people there (we have only attended the church since I was in the 6th or 7th grade). Each Sunday, when Bro. Phillip would finish his sermon and the choir would sing a song, and the invitation to come forward would be made, I could feel a fire in my stomach and God just pushing me to go, but I would fall to the devil on my shoulder each time. Each week, I would feel more and more defeated.

In 2006, I started dating a man that would soon become my husband. Little did I know that he too struggled with his salvation. I could not even come clean to him and say that I too was confused. Here I was trying to help him on his walk, when I desperately needed help with mine. A few years later, he went forward in front of our church family and asked Jesus to come into his heart. I wanted to do it too! I was so proud of him, but still so concerned what others would think about me.

In 2008, I lost my job. Aron and I had been struggling with infertility issues for a while, this just caused other frustrations in our lives, and my grandmother had been very sick. I joined a Bible Study at our church and began to attend Sunday school. After I really tried to focus on what mattered (God), things started to turn around in my life. We got pregnant (with Lovey girl) and I even got another job. Just as quickly as things can be given to you, things can be taken (I lost my job a few months later, boo). I still had my faith

Much time has gone by since all of that. We lost my MamMaw to cancer. Then my Aunt Diane. My PapPaw moved shortly after that, then he started to get sick. We lost him this past January. We got pregnant again. With so Much of the loss in my life I was blessed with a gift, Brayden.

I knew that I want to bring my babies up to love the Lord with all of their heart. Put him first in everything that they do. I want to read them Bible stories and teach them things that my parents taught to me. I want to lead by example. This was my time to follow Him and listen to what He is telling me to do.

This past Friday morning, I was up feeding Brayden and watching the news about the horrible tsunami and earthquakes that have been happening in Japan. I knew right then that at any time something like that could happen in my life. He is coming back, and would I be ready? (started to read Matthew 24) Would I go to heaven. I cried while giving Brayden his bottle and said a prayer and asked God to forgive me for my past sins and thanking him for sending his Son to die on a cross for me, and how I needed him to be in my heart. I felt such a peace that morning with my prayer that I had. I could not wait to tell my husband that on Sunday morning I was going to go forward, I knew if I told him that, I would in fact walk down there in front of God and all of his people and not be afraid. Well, I never said anything about it (that devil was really working on me) Then I was told some news of a family friend, my sweet Judy, had past away in her home, suddenly. So unexpected.

We do not know the time that we will leave this place or the time that God will come back. It could be tonight, it could be next week, the end of days could be nearer than we think. I do not know, only one person knows and I want to have NO DOUBT in my heart of my salvation when that time comes. Are you sure? Are you constantly bogged down by your sinful nature? Do you think that God has forgotten you? Could your time be tomorrow? I am so sure that my friend did not think that. I want to know for SURE that when my time comes I will go to heaven, and be singing and dancing, laughing with my mammaw and pappaw, seeing my aunt diane, watching as the world turns with my MawMaw, or doing Oil of Olay facials with my Mimi (the smell of Oil of Olay reminds me of her). I want to be rejoicing with my first love, Jesus Christ.

This morning, I went to church, thinking I did not have to walk down during the invitation at church. No one knew that I was having these struggles with my salvation. (devil working on me again) Then the preacher started talking about when you are saved in your younger years then you fall out of line, turning to sin when you know it is wrong. How people sometimes just stay at that point, in the wilderness, getting deeper and deeper into sin and never ask for His forgiveness. Was this the Lord using Bro Phillip as a vessel for me today or what, I think so. (so a God thing) Needless to say, I went forward in front of God and re-dedicated my life to Him. The peace that I have had today has been wonderful, and this by far has been the best decision of my life. I know that I was not perfect, and that in the future I will fall short of the glory of God, but He is always there and He knows my heart, and knows that I Love Him.




Ashley said...

That is so AMAZING! Im so happy for you! Thank you for reminding me how important it is to keep God FIRST ;)

Anonymous said...

Caryn, I'm so very happy that you are so happy in the special life you have made for yourself and your family. Love you, gwen

Gwen Alnasery said...

Ha, clicked on the wrong thing I'm not really anonymous!

Erin said...

Amen! Best decision you'll EVER make and best gift to your hubby and kiddos. So thankful you shared your testimony! Never know who you will touch!

Lindsay said...

So proud of you and sharing your story! I loved hanging out this morning and I kicked myself on the way home for not asking you more about your experience from Sunday. So glad you posted this! Congrats again on making that decision. It's not easy, but like you said has such huge rewards. Hope to see ya soon.

Vonda Axe said...

So excited for you and your family!!! You know if you need someone to talk with I am available. What a blessing to have your eternity nailed down!!! Thanks for sharing.

Laurie said...

I LOVE your story!!!!! I am so proud of you!

Kerry said...

That is so wonderful! So Happy for you and so proud of you!