In Sec 1, I joined the Boys’ Brigade as my CCA and I got to know about God through their weekly devotions and camps. We would also attend Youth Impact Worship Experience at Impact Life Church. Each time I attended the service, I felt something different about the atmosphere, but because of the fear of man, I chose not to receive Jesus into my life.
During one of the training for a competition in 2016, my batch mate invited me to the baptism service also known as the Dip. During that Dip service, I felt something different from previous services. My heart kept beating, and I just could not stop that tugging in my hear. it was God knocking on the door of my heart. That very day, I made the decision to receive Jesus into my life.
As I started attending discipleships, my disciplers showed me a list of truths about God. As I looked through the list, I realised that there were some lies I believed in because of how I viewed my earthly father. Lies such as “God is absent in my life”, and how ‘God is cold and distant’ were related to my own father.
My father was never involved in my life and was always absent during the most important days of my life like my birthdays or parent-teacher meetings. His absence made me feel that I wasn’t loved or appreciated. I slowly grew distant in my relationship with my father and would avoid him. He also abuse me physically and verbally.
my distorted view of God created a barrier between God and I, as I believed that God was uninterested in my life and is a violent person. Hence, every time I sinned or did something wrong, fear and shame would overwhelm me. I believed that I was unworthy to be called His child. I struggled with the fact that God loves me for who I am and He has already forgiven me of my sins.
With these lies, coupled with the fear and shame, it stopped me from going to God and I ran away from Him.
Though I was regularly attending and even serving in the Church in hopes of matching up to the expectations of being a Christian, I could never match up. It made me feel tired and burnt out regularly as I felt like I had to put up a front in front of God and the people in the Church.
It led me to live a double life, one in church and one outside of the Church. In the Church, I was someone who consistently attended Church and served, but outside of the Church, I lived a worldly life, looking for love and attention from girls and friends, even running to pornography. I knew that it was wrong but deceived myself to believe it was not wrong and grew numb. This led me to stray further and further from God.
I felt like I was in a dark room, with no hope for my life and that I was completely out of reach.
The turning point for me came after the lowest point in my life, where I emotionally and physically hurt two people in the Church. I even hid it from my lifegroup leaders because of the fear of being exposed by them and losing my image. However, the incidents were brought up by the people I hurt and I contemplated leaving the Church as I felt a lot of guilt and shame. But I chose to come clean and spoke to my lifegroup leaders. Even though I got corrected for my mistakes, they still chose to forgive me and even encouraged me to turn back to God. My lifegroup leaders’ actions showed me what the love of God and mercy is like and helped me reconcile with the truth that God is a loving father who loves and forgives His children.
Slowly over time, God started His healing work in me. He showed me the things I’ve placed over Him, the lies that I had believed about God, and He dug up all the hurts I experienced throughout my life. I felt the pain as the memories played through my head and I was disgusted with myself. It was a difficult process and I kept turning back to my old life. I was so used to it and condemned myself for it as I felt that I had disappointed God, but with the help of my discipler and accountability partner, I chose to submit myself to God, continually surrendering my life and my struggles to Him daily.
I saw how when I started to be honest with God and people, I stopped feeling defeated as I now know that I can win my battles with Him.
During the recent sermon series “Back to Basics”, God showed me that my foundation was not built on Him, but it was built on experiences and what I could get out of Christianity, like the miracles and blessings. When God did not show up or answer my prayers, I would question my faith and God Himself. God revealed to me all the blessings I already had and above all, how He chose to die for me on the cross even when I did not deserve it. I am grateful for what God has done for me and I’m encouraged to continue to run after Him and to seek Him with everything I have because I recognise that even if God did not perform any miracles in my life, He is still good!
After that series, I chose to receive Jesus into my life but this time, I recognised what a sinner I truly am and what the sinner’s prayer is really about. It was so different this time as each line of the sinner’s prayer spoke truth into my life. I used to believe that God was a father that was distant and uninterested but now I know that God is deeply involved in my life and that He has, is and will be part of my life! My relationship with God has become more intimate as my view of Him changed when I realised that I can go to Him as I am.
Through this season of my life, I have learned so much more about God and how He really is a good good father! He has shown me how much He loves me and who I am in His eyes. Even though I am still in the process of healing and being moulded by God, I know that I have a loving and personal father that I can run to and place my security in! I may still be struggling with sin but, be it lust or fear, I know that I can run to God as I’ve already been made right with Him. My foundation is no longer built on what God can give me but, rather, what God has already done for me on the cross.
Only by choosing to open the dark rooms in your heart, can God come and work in yours!