Then and Now
The Bible says I was chosen by God through Jesus Christ before the foundation of the world. This has led me to the realization that every single thing that occurred in my life was meant to be. This is my story. God has written my life.
I have been a Christian for just over two years now. As I look back at my life today, I can see where God was completely in control and involved all along.
Up until the time my dad got sick, I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up. I toyed with the idea of being a music teacher, but my dad didn’t think it was a very practical thing to be. I spent one summer volunteering at the hospital, but I didn’t like the hospital at all. But when my dad got sick, I saw what nurses really did and I thought, “I could do this.” It was as if a light bulb turned on in my brain. I see no other explanation for that except God turned that light on.
When Robert was born, he was exactly what I had prayed for, a boy with blond hair and blue eyes I could name after my father. I kidded myself into thinking I was praying to my dad, but I know it was really God answering my prayer.
When I was sleeping around, I had a couple of pregnancy scares and promised God, who I had told to leave me alone, I would stop being so reckless if He would get me out of those jams. The third time I made that promise, I knew He wasn’t going to let me off the hook again. I knew He let me face those consequences. With each and every moment in my life God showed up and I refused to see Him, my heart got harder and harder, like pharaoh in the book of Exodus.
He showed up at my job in a huge, almighty way when He raised the woman from the dead. That was the event that really made me believe He was real, but I still wanted to do life my way.
Even all the tattoos I got over the years make me realize how God directed my steps. He knew I was going to be tattooed. He has turned those tattoos for His purpose and His plan. People talk to me because I am tattooed and I share the Gospel with those people. He uses every circumstance in my life for His pleasure and purpose.
As the years went by, I remember becoming more aware of needing God, but not being able to figure out how to get to Him. I really knew there was a hell and I also knew I was destined to go there. I used to joke around that maybe folks could go to heaven on special occasions, but I had this deep lingering fear inside because I knew it wasn’t a joke.
I find myself wondering now if I spent 26 years in the wilderness, like the Israelites, because I told God to go away and leave me alone. He does give us what we ask for. It is also what finally brought me to my knees and to repentance.
When I hear the parable of the prodigal son, I am brought to tears because I was that person. I still marvel at the fact God took me back after all the terrible things I did. He took me back. I will never be able to repay Him for saving me. Thank God salvation is a free gift that we cannot earn.
So now after two years, things are looking pretty great. I have sought forgiveness from my boys. I don’t yell and scream at them anymore. Robert is 22 and doing really well. He works as a mechanic. He’s emotionally stable for about a year now after being put on medication. He still doesn’t know the Lord, but I am confident in His time, God will save him. Galen is almost 17 and a junior in highschool. His obsessive compulsive disorder has stabilized now that He knows the Lord and prays. His relationship with the Lord makes slow steady progress.
My mother and I get along great. I look back and wonder where we would be now if my dad hadn’t died. I’m not sure we would have such a good relationship if he were still here. My sister is married and has two boys of her own. My brother is also married with two girls and a stepdaughter. None of my family is saved, but again I feel confident God will save them in His timing. I used to be afraid I would be the only one, but my friend Leah pointed out that I am just the first. I pray for my family all the time and share the Gospel with them regularly.
I forgave my ex-husband after years of anger and bitterness. He lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and Robert’s half brother. He is still an alcoholic and drug addict. I pray for his salvation, along with his family.
Galen’s father lives in California with his wife and Galen’s two half sisters. I pray for his family to be happy and healthy. I pray for Galen and his dad to have a real relationship someday.
This has been the best two years I’ve had in a very long time. I can hardly wait to see where God will lead me next. To think my life story is written and I just have to walk in that story is so thrilling and exciting. I am so happy to be alive, to know that my Savior is with me and will never leave me or forsake me. He is my Father, my King, my Savior, and my Friend. I have been given the second chance I always wanted and only God gets all the glory!