Brace yourself…this is a long post, but I did break it up into 2 parts 🙂
I wasn’t raised in the church my entire life. My mother got saved when I was in the 6th grade and from that point on I was dragged to every church service imaginable. Two or three services on Sunday, Bible Study on Wednesdays, Revivals, choir practice, women’s services, youth services, I mean you name it we were there. The only thing I wasn’t forced to participate in was on outreach missions (you know, when you avoid answering the door on a Saturday morning because it’s either a Jehovah’s Witness, a girl scout or a Christian trying to spread the Word of Jesus Christ.) So I’ve been involved in church for a long time. I kinda feel like if you force your child to attend every single event at church that it will drive them away the moment they’re not “required” to go anymore. You know the saying: my house, my rules. Yeah that was how it was in my house too. I only got out of going to church because I worked in high school on the weekends. And when I moved on to college, I couldn’t get far away enough.
There’s a scripture in the Bible that reads: train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6. I’ve always joked and said I’m in the boomerang of that scripture. I’m in the bend when you start to come back. Well, it’s the sincere truth. I never really went into detail when I had oral surgery back in the Spring of this year. I was going to do a post on it but I just couldn’t. I couldn’t revisit those dark, dark days I experienced. I wanted to die. In the midst of the darkness, I got closer to God. I prayed more. I worshipped more. It was also during this time that the miniseries “The Bible” was on and I found myself getting thru my sleepless nights by watching the episodes on my dvr. I found strength thru it. I found peace. I found my faith.
Let’s fast forward to present day. Life is very difficult. It hasn’t gotten easier. I have sad eyes many days. I feel like each year I look forward to better and each year I get worse. But one thing I can say without a doubt is that God has truly done great things for me. I’m talking about not being able to pay bills and getting extensions I didn’t know I was eligible for. I’m talking about having my daughter in a summer camp program that I couldn’t afford yet I couldn’t afford for her to not have anything to do in the summer if she stayed with who was keeping her before. I may not be where I want to be, but I’m moving forward.
And now it’s time to take it back to the old school church service. It’s testimony time!!! I know there are so many different kind of church’s out there, but in the old school (Baptist, Missionary Baptist, Pentecostal Holiness, etc) church there would be the opportunity to stand up and tell the church how God blessed you. You always had those who just thanked the Lord for waking them up that day. But testimony service was really about the extraordinary things that happened. Like the cancer that is now gone. The mortgage that got paid when you didn’t have any money at all. The basket of food you stumbled upon on your way home from work when you didn’t have any food in your cupboards. The wayward child who skipped school and you thought you would lose them to the streets but you prayed and he turned around and got a scholarship to college. Those are testimonies. What I liked about testimony service, aside from cheering you on in your time of blessing, was that it gave you hope. Ya know? God’s gonna bless me too kinda hope.
So now it’s time for me to testify. Click here for part 2.