During my growing-up years, my mom and dad were serious about God. They took us to church. I went along, and I probably called myself a Christian, but God was always just kind of there. I didn’t long to know Him more, and I didn’t want to live for Him. Thankfully, I got plugged into a great church youth ministry.
At some point, we all doubt God. I was out to see if this God is real. If He is who the Bible says He is, my life would change and be better as a result of following Him. I learned that I can love Jesus while being myself; I could smile and laugh and be goofy and still follow Jesus. After surrendering my all to God, I quickly experienced His peace and joy. It didn’t make sense, but I felt content knowing He is in control and that He is who He says He is. When I’m closest to God, joy and peace overwhelm me. When I forget to spend time with God and let the world consume me, I become more easily agitated, angry, and less joyful.
Before I met Savannah, I had posted a video about my expectations for the girl I wanted to fall in love with someday. First, she had to love Jesus and want to live for Him. I also wanted someone fun and funny and everything else that I later found in Savannah. Her fire for God makes me want more of Him too. I can see how good and perfect and loving God truly is by seeing the love of my life transformed right before my eyes. We know our relationship won’t be perfect, but we are putting everything in the hands of the One who is perfect and trusting that.
I had thought I had a great Christian family; we went to church together nearly every Sunday. My dad had seemed like such a godly man. But then I found out he cheated on my mom and they were getting divorced. My whole childhood felt like a lie. Later, I met this “great guy”—someone I really loved and had given myself to. So when I found out he was cheating on me, I felt doubly betrayed. I started to give up on guys—and God. By the time I met Tommy, the wrong guy at the wrong time, I hardly ever went to church anymore. We slept together, and within months we broke up. Then I found out I was pregnant. Tommy and I never had a healthy relationship after Everleigh was born. I began to feel ugly and worse than worthless, like no one else would ever want to be with me because I had a kid. I begged God to bring me a guy who’d love and respect me and love Everleigh like his own.
When I first met Cole, I realized that he wasn’t like other guys I knew. He would just be himself. He talked about God, not in a forced or preachy way, and when he prayed it was like talking to a friend. When I told Cole that I had Everleigh, his response told me I could be myself with him—he brought out the best in me. And that’s how a relationship should be. This was the beginning of a fresh work that God was doing in my life to bring me back to Him. He used Cole to draw me back, but God was just getting started.
What church experiences did you have growing up?
Who in your life encourages you the most in your relationship with God?
What kind of relationship do you want to have with God? Who can help you learn about growing closer to God?