How I Became a Christian

This is the story of how I became a Christian.

But first, it’s important to look at my parents’ faith background.

My mom was raised Catholic and always had some issues with it. After she became an adult, she looked for another Christian church. She actually ran into a really weird, disillusioning church sect in the process. Nothing ever felt right, and she eventually stopped looking. But she was always a Christian.

My dad has really always been a man of God, too. He’s just never been that into actually going to church.

Since my mom didn’t like being raised in a faith she didn’t agree with, she and my father decided to not baptize me. They wanted me to be able to choose my faith when I was ready.

But the only preschools in our small Iowa city were at churches, so my parents decided to send me to a Lutheran preschool.

And I loved it.

I wanted to start going to Sunday school, too. So my parents obliged, and tried out the services themselves. It still didn’t feel like the right church for them, but they took me to Sunday school every Sunday for years. I also did vacation Bible school.

I really loved church, and I really loved Jesus!

When I was seven, my family moved to a new neighborhood. I already knew a girl, Lauren, in the neighborhood from school. She introduced me to her friend, Rachel, who lived a couple houses down.

Rachel’s family went to a small reformed church not too far away. One night, they invited us to their Wednesday night service. Lauren and I tagged along with Rachel’s family and we found out we really liked this new church!

So we both brought our moms to check it out, and the moms began to love the church too.

My mom started helping to teach Sunday school – even before she officially joined the church.

Since Lauren and her mom were never baptized, either, we were glad to have the opportunity at this new church.

During an early 8 AM service in 2002, Lauren, her mom, me and my little brother, Mickey, were baptized. It was so cool because people we didn’t even know went to the church were at that service that day. My beloved Librarian from school was there, along with my 1st grade teacher. It was so special that they were witness to our baptism.

My parents officially joined the church around that same time, and my mom became deeply involved with many other church functions. When she joined, she reaffirmed her faith.

She finally felt at home!

And I don’t think her faith has ever been stronger.

It was always my desire and my choice to follow Christ. I always felt called, and I think that’s pretty cool. And since I’m the editor of Devotional Diva now, I think it’s so awesome that I can help spread God’s glory.

I love the fact that I chose to be baptized myself and that I remember it. It was such an amazing experience.

My family (and Lauren and Rachel’s families) still attend that special church. We’re so blessed to have a church that really feels like home!  But now, I’m doing my own thing. My husband and I haven’t found a church like that in California yet, but that’s okay.

How I became a Christian may not be very typical, but I really appreciate that I was always able to follow what I have always known to be right.

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photo credit: -mrsraggle- via photopin cc

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When Christians Are Hurt: Share Your Story!

I have been hurt. You have been hurt. We’ve all been hurt. But how do you respond to hurt in a Christian way?

If you identify as a Christian, you believe in the New Testament and the teachings of Jesus. One of the verses I always associate with Jesus is this one:

Matthew 5:38-40 
“You have heard the law that says the punishment must match the injury: ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say, do not resist an evil person! If someone slaps you on the right cheek, offer the other cheek also.  If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too.”
 

I love this scripture, and try to live by it. But until recently, just focusing on this one section gave me a rather skewed image of Jesus.

During my Lent studies of Jesus, this scripture really changed that image:

Matthew 21: 12-13
 “Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out all the people buying and selling animals for sacrifice. He knocked over the tables of the money changers and the chairs of those selling doves. He said to them, “The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be called a house of prayer,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves!”

Now, Jesus had very good reason to be turning over tables at the Temple – the sellers’ and money changers’ tables were blocking Gentiles from being able to pray.

But all too often before I delved into that scripture, I considered Jesus to be mostly meek and humble. While those characteristics are true of Jesus, He was also very strong. He stood up for what was right and justly. The verses from Matthew 21 are proof of that.

And since I receive all of my power from Jesus, that means I can be strong, too. And so can you.

Just because we are Christians, it does not mean we can’t stand up for ourselves, others, and what is right. There are good and bad ways to do it, yes, but it is possible.

If you have been hurt, you can share your story.

The truth is, I can’t create all the content for Devotional Diva. Nor do I want to! Devotional Diva should be about many women sharing their stories.

You can stand up for yourself, heal yourself from this hurt and pain, and help others in the process.

One of the reasons I fell in love with writing was the ability to create change through it. You can spread the word in a healthy and respectful way at Devotional Diva.

By sharing your story, you are helping others with the same experiences. They can relate to you. In my opinion, life is all about relationships and relating to others.

Devotional Diva will help you share your story and stand up for yourself. And as editor, I will stand up for you and your story.

If you would like to “become a diva”  (guest contributor), please see the Become a Diva page for more information and the submission form.

You may submit written articles, or even something of a more visual nature.

The requirements for a written story are: 500-700 words in length, with a 3-4 sentence bio and a current picture. For all other types of submissions, please contact me for more information.

Become a Diva today!

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