Being at a nightclub and everything that came with it produced a feeling of freedom. Fake freedom that is. And although it was only an illusion it was one that I was comfortable with.
Church on the other hand, was not a place that I visited. I never contemplated going to one either, until I received an invitation from my sister.
Chapter four of my book, A New Breed of Women, I talk about how one invitation changed it all for me. The moment I encountered God’s presence for the very first time I knew that I had come face to face with my solution. I knew that Jesus was the anecdote that I needed, but my unhealthy desires were extremely strong at the time.
I knew that my lifestyle called on me, but it’s what I wanted to change most. So, I made a decision to go to church despite of my smoking and dating habits. Despite of my love of liquor and drunkenness. I didn’t want to change myself, I desperately wanted God to change me. I had faith that he had the power to revolutionize my heart.
So, I persisted.
It was one of the toughest processes I’ve ever endured. It took many years and now at 30, He’s still continues to mold my character. He’s still reprogramming new and healthy beliefs onto my hard drive. Daily I emerge myself into His presence through prayer and through music. Through moments of quiet meditation. I continue to evolve and become a better person. I’m becoming transparent, more honest and humble.
It’s a tough process because you have to die to your ego. Die to the defense mechanisms that you’ve known all your life. The one’s that have kept you safe. And sure they served a purpose once, but it’s all an illusion of control and fake strength. When God enters our lives we must adopt God’s offense tactics to live healthier lives.
It’s beautiful to experience true peace and security. To know that where there was once rage, now lives serenity. Where there was once sadness, now a harvest of joy prevails. For me the greatest blessing is not seeing who I am now, but rather remembering all the moments where I wanted to give up, but experiencing God’s comfort and rehabilitating strength. Now, I hug my struggles all the more because it’s in our pain and process where hope and purpose are brewed.
Our greatest blessings will not be found in the things that we obtain, but rather in the secret revelations that God will speak to our hearts in the middle of our greatest afflictions. The blessing is found in the moments of hopelessness because that’s where His promises are made flesh.
Real change can take place, but it can only be done by encountering God’s vivid presence.
If you don’t attend church, this is for you. The next time that someone extends an invitation to church, take it. Don’t hesitate because it might lead you to the most important encounter of your life. An encounter with your savior.