Tuesday, November 20, 2007

...testimony starter

I love reading people's stories and testimonies and find that there is such power in hearing how God works in other's lives.
To me they bring more revelation and more insight than one could get from a counciling session with a pastor or a public meeting joined with other believers. Something about the process, where someone has been and where they have ended up and all the in between stuff, it just matters so much....Everyone has a story, a wonderful history that God has been working on all along, that is worth sharing with someone...whether you think you have an interesting testimony or not, God has been at work in your life for good, for His purposes, and this may include encouraging others with the life you have led thus far! All this to say, I have many things I have wanted to share regarding my life, many layers of lessons, many years of heartache and disillusionment, to a current season of restoration, hope, joy, and love! Truly God has been at work, truly he has watched over my life!
I will begin to tap into my story here now, with a portion of my life to set a precursor to the latest events and workings of grace in my life and my marriage. Firstly, I was raised in a Christian home, of Reformed Baptist Theology to be exact, although I never knew what this actually meant until now, and still to this day don't really know why it matters to have a specific denomination(but that's just me!). I attended a private Christian school from grades K-12 and was very active in church and youth group as a teen, until I graduated high school. High school was for me a time of much emotion, discovery and trying to fit in and be accepted. My whole world revolved around a social context, both in school, sports, church and youth group. I sought to find friends that were genuine and true, but to no avail. Everyone was too busy discovering who they were, too concerned with, well , everything, to be comitted to care for one another truly. These were truly confusing and difficult times to be an emotional, vulnerable, and insecure girl like myself. I believed in God for sure, and I know I had a level of faith in Him that was more like a seed planted in my heart. I wanted to live for God and tried, but it didn't feel real to me. At the end of my high school years I started to date and hang out with non-Christians or should I say non-churched kids. I liked my new friends, they had a sense of carefreeness that attracted me. They didn't seem so concerned with the weight of the world, which I now know, was condemnation for all my poor "Christian" friends. Anyway, I began to taste "the things of the world" and started to discover myself (not really)....
Needless to say, most would call what happened next in my life "rebellion". I went on my own merry way from my life at home with mom and dad and discovered the world for myself. I spent a good 4-5 years living "in the world" and living "in sin" with a boyfriend. Years of my life were spent trying to just survive however I could, as far away from "religion", church and Christianity as possible. I was tired of trying to be something I wasn't, something I couldn't be, because honestly I never knew who I really was in Christ, or if I even genuinely trusted Him for myself. All those years I experienced my own personal guilt and an unspoken condemantion flew at me from my past life whenever I ran into someone from church or school. I knew deep down the path I had chosen for myself was not "right", nor was it giving God any reason to be "pleased with me". I didn't want to admit that to anyone, nor did I care to change my ways. But, God in his Sovereignty and kindness had a plan to move me from my despondency into a dependency on Him..............!

The next portion of my testimony will have to come at another post, as I have not yet decided how much of it to share publicly.........Thanks for listening so far!


Steve LaBs said...

Thanks for sharing! I love hearing testimonies and seeing our living God on the move in people's lives. I can't wait for the rest of the story!

lydia said...

Thanks - yeah God is orchestrating his symphony to his score....and it's amazing to hear!

Joel B. said...


I've really enjoyed this "starter," and I'm looking forward to hearing more. I can relate to much of the insecurity and condemnation, etc, and I can especially relate to the times of feeling drawn to the "world" and their carefreeness, when the church has only served to heap condemnation and lack of freedom on me.

My eyes welled up while reading this, not only because you went through it and I went through many similar things, but also because there are a lot of hurting people in the church right now (or who have 'strayed' from the church because of the hurt), who need to hear this message of God's unconditional love and grace, and of true freedom in Christ.

I also know it's hard to know for sure what to share and what not to share. That is, how personal our public testimonies get. I've debated a lot of this within myself. So I'll be praying for you for wisdom in this.

Thanks so much for sharing this!