I’ve been having a hard time figuring out how to approach this post. My faith in Christ is definitely the most important thing in my life, but when you’re writing about something so big, how do you know where to start?
I’ve been a Christian for almost my entire life. I was raised in church and Sunday school, and when I was eight years old, I made the decision for myself that I believed in Jesus and wanted to be like Him and to follow Him forever. I talked to my parents for several weeks before walking down the aisle at our church and kneeling to pray. I will always remember that as soon as my knees touched the floor, I heard a wild thumping and shuffling as my parents set my youngest sisters down in the pew beside Kristi and headed down the aisle after me. They prayed on either side of me, and when I finished praying and stood, it seemed that half the church had joined them, many with tears streaming down their faces, praising God for the decision that I had made. A life of faith is also a life in church community, and because people are imperfect, churches are also imperfect. But I never had any doubt that those people loved me and prayed for me. They were my second family.
Faith is such a touchy subject today. The second you begin to talk about it, some people will begin to tune you out. But when faith is central to who you are–faith, in fact, is your main identity and source of joy–how can you not talk about it?
I claim faith as my main identity and joy, but the truth is that I don’t always live that, which is probably why so many people are bothered when Christians begin to talk about faith, and why they think we are hypocrites. I believe what the Bible says, that all people are sinners, that sin separates us from God, who is perfect, and that Jesus, His Son, came to earth in human form and allowed himself to take on our sins through His death on the cross, allowing all people forever to be saved and reconnect to God through belief in Him. Jesus is the only way to God, the only way to salvation, the only way to heaven. He is also the only way to true peace and contentedness and love, and He desires that His followers share His love with others. I believe every bit of this–and yet most of the time I fail at sharing that love with others.
It’s often awkward to try to figure out how to bring up faith, when Jesus often isn’t a subject in everyday conversation with strangers, except as the object of profanity. I try to love people; I pray for them; I try to help when I can. But I want people to know that I do it because of Jesus, and too often that part of the message just sticks in my throat. And I’m so ashamed of that.
I have gotten a little off topic here in this positivity post. What I really want to share is that Jesus means more to me than anything. God is so much bigger than my worries and frustrations and joys, and He can handle anything. As the children’s song says, “God can do anything but fail.” When I have hard days, I pray. When I found out I was pregnant, I prayed. When I lost my sister, I prayed a LOT. I pray when I’m happy, sad, excited, or just need someone to talk to. Jesus is a true friend. He lightens loads, brings peace, guides me through life. Every good thing in my life is from Him, and He has helped me through all the bad ones. I wish I was better at sharing His good news with others. But I have faith He will help me with that as well.