The event that changed my life was the moment I decided I wanted to truly know Jesus. I know it’s cliche’ and probably expected given that I am a faith and lifestyle blogger, but it’s true.
Before sharing with you exactly why and how that day became so important, let me share briefly a bit about my history.
I was raised in a family of believers and while I definitely acknowledged that there was a God, I didn’t really know Him. I’d pray to Him often when I needed something or wanted to escape a certain situation, but I never knew Him nor truly acknowledged the weight of my sinfulness. The word repentance was far from me and I didn’t even know it’s meaning.
There was once a guy that I really thought I loved. I did practically anything he asked me to because I was naive and searching for affirmation outside of myself and outside of Jesus. I really cared about him and thought, maybe if I do these things, he’ll like me more and he’ll want to commit to me. Again, I was very naive.
Long story short, I found out that he was having relations with someone that I was close with. Now, let me state that we were not in a relationship, so it wasn’t that he cheated. However, at the time, I could not deny the hurt that I felt because all of the suspicions that I had regarding the nature of their interactions were affirmed but was affirmed at a time where I was already breaking at the seams. I do not think he’s a horrible guy at all, but I know in that moment it felt like my world was crashing down on me.
That night I couldn’t stop crying. I remember that I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed. I was completely broken and couldn’t stop the tears from falling. I was crying so hard that it became difficult to breathe because I was crying so hard. I texted my brother some text that I don’t really remember, but I remember his response was something to the effect of, “what did he do?” or “what’s wrong?”
I didn’t respond that night because by the time he sent that text, I was already thinking of ways to end it all. Before that night, I often wondered how someone could feel that low that they would end it all. How someone could lose all hope for their future and think that ending it all would be the better option. Yet there I was, in my bedroom, sobbing, feeling unheard, unloved, worthless, and plotting the many ways I could kill myself. I began entertaining whether people would even really care. Would he even really care. These thoughts came rushing in that I now know were from the enemy, but for someone who couldn’t stop crying for nearly an hour, the thought of ending the pain, finding some sort of rest seemed so tempted.
I knew I did not want to do it while my parents were awake because I knew I would be stopped. I knew what time they normally went the bed and made very specific plans to do so at that time. I set an alarm and said I would take a nap, wake up and get it over with at around 3:30am.
Needless to say, that never happened. I woke up the next morning with just enough time to get ready to get to class on time and felt a strong urge to speak to one of the professional therapists the university provided in our university dues.
I didn’t realize it then, but I know now that was God. I know now that despite how truly lost I was and how close I was to ending it all, He kept me from making a decision that would have hurt so many people.
Almost a year after that moment, I bowed down at the altar of my (now) fiance’s home church, sobbing, but not because I was sad, but because I truly felt repentant and because I knew I was tired of running away from Jesus. I was crying because despite how much I could see how wicked I truly was, God was there inviting me to follow Him – still. He was inviting me to serve Him – still. I remember falling on my knees at the altar, feeling almost as if the Lord was opening His arms, welcoming me home, despite my suicidal past and adolescent mistakes. I could sense the Lord joyfully inviting me back into His holy family – flaws and all.
This was the day that my life was truly changed because despite the errors and the pain of my past, I truly sensed the freedom of the Lord. That because of His sacrifice, I live in Him. That because of His love for me, I live. That literally because of God, I am alive and did not successfully kill myself.
I truly owe my life to Jesus. He saved me not just once on the cross, but He saved me from ending things myself. He reminds me that in Him we have purpose and we have an identity. He reminds me that there is power in His precious name. This is why that moment, where I laid my burdens down through a stream of joyful tears and felt God lifting those burdens off my back and onto His, is one that will be the best moment of my life. It’s the moment that completely changed the last few years for me. It’s the moment where I finally understand God’s unending love for us through His unstoppable love for me.
This is still a process for me as there are days where I feel like I am successful at this and days where it’s truly a struggle. But, I am so thankful for Jesus and His sacrifice. I would probably be dead if it weren’t for Him. I know that sounds like I am reaching, but if you knew just how close I was to committing suicide, you would understand that the only thing that stopped me from waking up at 3:30 in the morning to kill myself was Jesus Christ. The only thing convicting me to go to talk to a professional in our colleges’ health system at the time was Jesus.
Although, I am certainly a work in progress, this event that led me to make this decision to finally stop running and to seek to know Him deeper will always be the one that changed my life, forever.