I am not who I was before I met Jesus.
My name is still Gina. I still have the same traits, memories, and quirks(many) as the person I was when I met Him…but I have been remade. Somewhere along the way, I shed the old person and my true identity was revealed. The identity of who I am in Christ.
When He called me, I was “living in sin”, if you will. At the ripe and oh-so-wise age of 21, I was living with my then boyfriend out of wedlock. While reading a book about The Rapture he gave to me, my eyes were opened. For the first time, I understood why Jesus came. Even though I had heard the stories & knew the message, something was different. Something took me over, and I had zeal about my belief for the first time. I couldn’t wait to tell everyone of the reason for this newly discovered joy I had. I longed to know more about my Savior, so I dove in.
As a new believer, there were stumbles and falls…as it is with any new journey. The encounters with Him far outweigh any of the those, though. The negatives are cast in the shadow of the glory moments…the moments where I have felt Him near or have heard His voice.
One of my “shadow moments” was when I discovered how I was picking and choosing what to believe out of the Bible….to fit my situation, to fit my comfort level…to fit me. Using the phrase, “God is love”, I accepted things that outright contradict what the Word of God says. The world’s belief and opinions began to override what God has clearly laid out. Ignoring the prompting of the Holy Spirit to be changed, I resisted and remained stubborn in my own opinion.
With maturity, the desire came to align myself & my views with God. One specific song lyric moved me – “Break my heart for what breaks Yours”. If I call myself a child of God, why would I not strive to see everything from His eyes? So, the prayer for transformation came. I simply asked Him to teach me. (He is The Teacher, after all)
Sure enough, changes began to happen. Not by my own power. There was a shift, a movement. Curiosity about specific(controversial) issues arose…research followed. Exposing myself to issues that I had always been uncomfortable with, my heart started to soften…to be broken by things that didn’t affect it before. He has changed my mind. When the Holy Spirit abides in you, the desires for this world begin to fade. You become more sensitive to things that are not pure, not of Him. He begins to prune you, to clip off the things that will serve no purpose for Him, or are ungodly. The most beautiful thing is, He called me as I was…the imperfect, stubborn girl. He sees me for who I can be.
I am now 31, and can truthfully say that over the past decade, there have been some dramatic changes. They are still occurring, daily. The desire of my heart is to simply please Him. Of course, I’m not perfect & will make mistakes. But in everything I do, I want to bring glory to the God who gave me breath…the Man who saved me. My desire is to be on the narrow road that He refers to, the one that is less traveled. It may not always be the popular one…but I have the only Company I need.