Friday, October 7, 2016

Mommy, I Think You Need God - Part 2

(This is Part 2 of my friend Amber's story. It is Day 7 in the 31 Days of Change  series. To read Part 1, click here.

        "While I was in rehab some Christian women from a local church would come to the rehab and dedicate their time, money and resources to us addicts. And in response to their kindness, the addicts would steal, deceive and manipulate these women. I wanted the happiness, love and wholeness those women had. I started to believe in Jesus and God, and I wanted to learn more.

         I began to pray to God, not knowing how to pray except out of selfishness.  God answered my prayer once again.  I completed six months in rehab and Johnny faithfully took me in to live with him when I was done.  I lost all my material things, my home, all my clothes, credit, my car, everything!  It was okay though because my life was saved.  I have not had an urge for alcohol or cocaine since I completed rehab in February 2013.

         Marriage was still not an option. We lived together and I was going to the doctor to get contraceptive when I found out I was pregnant with our second daughter.

         In March of 2014, my four year old daughter was invited to Sagebrush Church. She absolutely loved the kid’s ministry and asked me if she could go the next weekend.  I agreed to go one time, but had no intention of going again. 

              One day my daughter said, “Mommy, I think you need God.”

           That absolutely broke my heart and I attended church the next weekend without John.  I was blown away by the love and kindness the volunteers in Kid’s Planet showed us, as well as the Greeters, the Pastor and other people at the church. Johnny was still making excuses not to go.  He saw changes in me. I was more patient and he saw how much our daughter loved church, so he attended the Easter service with us. We became regular attenders. I committed my life to follow Jesus and I saw my life transforming faster than when it spiraled down.  

         I do not exactly remember the sermon Pastor Todd preached, but it was about marriage.  We were embarrassed that we were living together and not married.  Every time I wanted to fill out the sheet to talk to the Pastor or wanted to dedicate the children to the Lord, it would eat me alive inside to know that we were not married and being so selfish. 

         On our Anniversary of five years of being together off and on, Johnny proposed.  This was about three months after starting to attend church. I said yes and we had his friend, who was ordained through the World Wide Web, marry us. We felt a huge sense of relief.  We immediately dedicated our girls to the Lord (without being ashamed). I was baptized about six months later, then started volunteering in the children’s ministry a few months after that.

         When we first started going to church we did not tithe. I was working as a restaurant manager and could not find a job as a Dietitian, which was demoralizing in my eyes. John and I had different bank accounts and we argued about money often. We spent money recklessly, and did not pay my loans or tackle our debt.  We made excuses not to tithe and have joint bank accounts because that would jeopardize our money, not being able to buy materialistic things.  I needed clothes, the girls needed clothes, we all are picky eaters etc.., John loved his video games, liked his toys, addicted to eBay, etc.…

         Then Todd did a message on budgeting and tithing.  The minute we heard that message I closed my bank account and joined John’s.  We became ONE! We started tithing, paying our bills and we have been blessed with more than enough money.  We are far from rich but we are able to pay our bills without fighting and give people money when we need too.  We can pay John’s mother now to watch our kids when before we could not. Jesus blessed me with the knowledge and skills to take an exam to become a Certified Diabetes Educator.  Life is absolutely amazing!  I can not explain how wonderful and unbelievable life seems ever since our family found GOD; all thanks to Sagebrush Church.

         Our home is centered on Jesus. Both of our girls know God and love him.  Every morning they ask us if we are going to Church.  Our oldest daughter always wants to stay for two or more classes! We listen to Christian music. I have become more knowledgeable about Jesus Christ and have started to grow with Him and walk my life everyday with Him. My life has totally changed since we decided to live for Him and follow what He says. I have purpose in life and I met a new family, my church family. I never knew love like this before."

“And he said: "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Matthew 18:3

 How about you? Do you have faith like a child? Isn't it inspiring to hear how God truly changes people lives?

                  (If you would like to read more stories of Changed Lives, click here.)

1 comment:

  1. Rich. Such a great series. God has certainly shown up!