October 11, 2011.
I decided I needed a place to type out my real feelings about school, life, God and everything. I'm doing it for me; this isn't going to be a well thought-out story or poem or anything. It's just me. So, here goes...
I'm fifteen; a sophomore in high school.
The best years of your life, apparently.
I guess I need to get one thing out there. I'm a Christian. Well, actually, I hate telling people that, because I'm not a "go to church a lot, marry a nice guy and have three kids" Christian.
I have a living, passionate, unbelievably real relationship with God.
In 7th grade, I started off as your average Christian. I was saved, I cried a lot, and I was on fire for God. Then over the years, it faded away as I entered 8th grade and started to hang out with girls who wore a lot of eyeliner and short shorts. I followed whatever they were into at the time; guys, parties, cussing, sexual Ke$ha music. Somehow, I lived like that for a full two years.
A lot of drama and two school transfers later, I received an unexpected Facebook message from an old youth group friend. He had invited me to go to a church camp for a week over the summer. I wasn't too sure about it; I didn't really know anyone who was going besides him and a few other kids. After a lot of pursuasion, I went.
It was pretty awkward at first. I mean, I didn't know anyone. All the girls were pretty cliquey, so I kept to myself a lot. Then, about halfway through the camp, I was beginning to question why I had even decided to come. It was just... awkward.
So about the third or fourth day of camp we went to the lake. We were in the middle of Wyoming, so there were giant, steep cliffs surrounding a deep, chilly lake on a ridiculously hot summer day. Any kid's dream. We were diving off the cliffs, going tubing and generally just hanging around. I began to change my mind about the whole camp thing; it was turning out to be really fun.
The next day, we headed to the lake again. There was a really, really, really, really tall cliff that was down the road a ways, away from all the adults and most of the kids. A couple of the older guys were climbing up and jumping off. It was scary because if you didn't jump far enough, you would land on a chunk of sharp rocks and probably die. That thing was pretty high up. I was with a group of four other people, and stupidly I decided to climb to the top of the cliff and jump off. I stood there for a good five minutes, psyching myself up. But for every second I waited, it got about five hundred times scarier. Finally, I just sort of jumped off without thinking twice. (First girl, by the way!)
And that's what happened to my faith in God.
I think it really happened when we were in chapel later that day, and we started singing "Grace Like Rain." I had never really raised my hands or anything when we sang songs at church; I wasn't ever that into it. Before I knew it, my hands were up, and I stopped pretending. I needed God. It was time to admit it and make a change. So, I dove off the cliff, straight into the arms of Jesus Christ.
Now, four months later, I'm still feeling the rush of my huge leap. I can't get enough of the Bible and I count down the days to church every week. Over the summer, I wouldn't shut up about God to my best friend. She thought I was really annoying, and now she's in the front row of church, falling to her knees right beside me every weekend. We now have our other two close friends sitting right next to us, and I can't thank God enough.
I've definitely grown in my faith more in this past summer than the three years I was a Christian before I decided to go to that camp. Honestly, if you are struggling in your relationship with God or if you don't know Him at all, there's nothing I can say to give you what I have. That's up to God. What proves His existence to me is feeling the complete, 180 degree turn my life has taken. When someone experiences that kind of switch, there is no messing around and denying God anymore. I know He's real. No doubt. I pray you'll jump off of that cliff soon. It really is amazing :)
But, that's the easy part.
Seeing the world in the state that it is, I pray that Jesus will return every day. I hate being forced to watch people constantly live in contrast to God. (Abusing their bodies, throwing around God's name like it means nothing... etc.) School is torture; my heart breaks for nearly everyone I encounter, from the "Christians" to the hard core athiests. I'd give anything to be homeschooled.
But that's not the point. I know the truth. I want to share the gift I've received. I'd be selfish to hide it from everyone else. I want you to feel the freedom I feel and just know daily that you really are loved, and not just by anyone, but by the Creator of the entire universe. That just blows my mind.
I feel better writing this all out. It's been a pretty rough day at school.
One day at a time...
God bless you all <3