Saturday, November 1, 2008

My life is not my own

Six years ago tomorrow, I walked away from my old life, and decided to follow Jesus. On November 2, 2002, I was baptized by a woman who to this day has a special section of my heart, Nancy Myers. I had inquired about the women's ministry at our church, she met with me one day after church and talked to me. I told her my struggles of deciding to be baptized and I was somebody who would commit to something, but didn't know if I could commit to God. I didn't know if I could follow God all the days of the rest of my life. She took my hand and prayed for me. Two weeks later, I decided following Jesus was something I was going to do and I was honored to have Nancy baptize me.

Here I am six years later. My life has changed so much, you wouldn't believe me if you heard me talk about my previous life. My views of the world are not my own, they are God's. I see the world through God's eyes. Every single thing I possess, every single word out of my mouth, every single smile I show, every single breath I breathe....it all belongs to God. It is all His. My life, this life I live, is not my own. I forget that sometimes, it's very easy to get caught up in this crazy world we live in. But, through it all God has been there, grabbing hold of my hand and pulling me back close to Him when I get too far away. Reminding me who I am, who brought me this far. Showing me that even though I still very much struggle with things in my life, sometimes even trusting Him, He will not leave my side.

Life is so, so beautiful, I manage to see God every day. It might be in a smile, a sunset, a kind word, a small child holding my hand. Every day, I am utterly amazed, completely awed, and found absolutely speechless by God. It really makes my eyes well up with tears just to think about how this life of mine has been saved, how this heart of mine has changed. I don't know where I would be if I hadn't found God. Honestly....I might be dead either from drugs or self-infliction. I wouldn't be a good person, because I had so many bad things coming at me growing up. I had bad paths to take, but chose not to take them.

Every year, I normally celebrate my "second" birthday somehow. This year is no different. And in the 6 years I have been celebrating, I have never celebrated the best way I can think of....

To watch another person be baptized on the same day as me. And this person isn't just someone I have never met, it's Dana, one of the girls who I have watched grow up in Children's Ministry, one of the kids that her mom says I influenced. Many times, I was her teacher, guiding her and her twin sister to follow Jesus. Always remembering that I am to show God's love because all of these precious children are watching my every move. I love teaching the kids at church because once they understand who Jesus is and what He has done for them, it's the most precious thing. Adults become inhibited about talking to people about Jesus, but kids aren't. They will openly tell anyone about this man named Jesus.

My life as a Christian has NOT been easy, I will not lie to you. I have lost relationships with family members and friends, I have been told that God is stupid and the Bible is full of crap, I have been talked about, hated, despised, etc, etc, etc, all because I decided to follow Jesus. I even got a tropical disease that I'll have the rest of my life because I wanted to go tell people in the Dominican Republic about this God I serve.

But I have also felt love, God's love shining through people. And every single hurt I have experienced, every mosquito bite, whatever, it all has been WORTH every single second my life possesses, and I wouldn't change a thing. To be where I am now, watching Dana be baptized is worth everything. As my "About Me" section says....Christ never said it was going to be easy, He only said it was going to be worth it.

Oh and it's so, so, so worth it.

Quote of the day: "I am no where that I planned to be in my life, but EXACTLY where God wants me." ~Me

3 comments:

The Coffey Grounds said...

Praise God for this special day in your life you will never forget. How blessed you are to have Nancy at your side when you were discovering God. She is a women after God's own heart! I love her and miss not seeing every week.
Thanks for staying in touch Brandy. I love hearing from you.
Hugs, Liz

Romi said...

How slow I amn to post, Brandy but happy beautiful baptismal birthday!!! : ) Indeed it was an extra glorious night to have you there celebrating in Dana's baptism!! It just meant the world to us! We hope you enjoy the 6 roses (1 for each year that you've walked in Christ). Sometimes I think we underestimate the impact we can have on another for Christ. But it's moments such these tonight, that you (Brandy) hear God saying well done, my good and faithful servant!

And thanks so much for sharing how you came to Christ through Nancy and for reflecting on your walk these past 6 years! I so love your heart and the joy and gratitude it exudes even in spite of adversity. And you're right...walking with Jesus is so well worth it!

And I'm sorry I wasn't able to visit with you tonight, but I was serving as a prayer partner. I would love it if we all could meet up for dinner sometime! Let me know the best times for you and we can go from there.

MEGA blessings on your week!! : )

PS: I'm adding your great quote to my quote list! : )

Roxanne Kristina said...

This is one of my fav's. Reminded me of it as your heart echos this (how cool for you to remind me of Mother Teresa!!! :0):

St. Teresa's Prayer

May today there be peace within. May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities born of faith. May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content knowing you are a child of God. Let this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us.

xoxo,
R