I grew up in a mixed family. My father’s parents were staunch Taoists and very superstitious people. My father himself, as far as I can tell, is an atheist. On my mother’s side were Christians; however I had never seen my grandparents there go to church. I am grateful that my mother always brought me with her to church. It was through this that I’ve always known that God existed, was familiar and tried to practice the 10 commandments, and was taught in Sunday School that there was a man called Jesus, and he was very important.
But God was a stranger to me, and I didn’t know it. Because I thought I knew God, I never searched for Him. Indeed for me, I can fully understand when Jesus said in Matthew 13 verse 14: ‘You will indeed hear but never understand, and you will indeed see but never perceive’
He is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit
When I was 13, I was moved up out from Sunday School to Youth Bible Study. And the teacher started bluntly with: there is one God. And yes I had no problem with that. But then she said something that completely threw me off: And He is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. I was shocked that she should say such a thing! I felt angry and even betrayed. Why is she saying now that there are 3 Gods? The first commandment said that there was one God and that we should love Him, and Him only. Also, if this was true, why had no one told me? I blamed everyone, I was angry at everyone. I had been to church all my life, and was it possible that I could have missed the whole point?
And then I realised, that not once had I read the Bible for myself. I was also scared stiff to start. What else was it going to tell me? What if I would lose myself even more and come out more lost? I had lost my trust in people to teach me. So one day I prayed to God (The Father of course) and I told Him I was sorry I didn’t look for Him, and if He could, could He please guide me and give me understanding as I read His word. Then I started to read.
Matthew 7v7 and 8: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it will be opened to you”
All I can say is, it was SUCH a struggle. Even the smallest seed of doubt in mind could throw me off. Things just did not seem to make sense. Why was it so important to believe in Jesus? Then one day in church, the Pastor said that we believed in Jesus because we know we need Him. Here are my pastor’s words:
“By default, we are all born into the Kingdom of Satan, Only through faith in Christ and the Grace of God do we enter the Kingdom of God”
I thought I was a good person
So here’s the big problem. I thought I was a good person. At least, good enough so that no one had to be brutally whipped and crucified and killed for me. I asked God to show me that I needed Jesus, to show me my sin. And as they say, be careful what you ask for, it may come true.
God revealed to me my sinful rotten nature through many events, but also mainly a fight with my brother. These events were very painful, very long and resulted in sinful cycles that I could not break myself. I shocked even myself. Then I realised I was damaged and guilty. And it felt so permanent. I prayed to God to forgive me, yet I remained unchanged in nature. I realised I was a hopeless case.
Then Pastor Stephen said in a sermon: Jesus came to save sinners, people like me. And when I read the Bible, things finally fell into place. And everything made sense. I realised I truly needed Jesus. I thank God for ending my cold war with my brother and helping me start a new relationship with Him.
Where is Jesus in my life?
Where is Jesus in my life? When I look back I see that He’s always been with me, from the very moment I first sought Him. He’s worked in me, so that I do things that, when I think about it, I would never have done if it was just left to my own nature. Also, He has helped me to trust Him in everything. I cannot say that since the day I found Him my life has been easier, no, in fact perhaps it has been harder, as with everything I am aware of the serious threat of temptation and the consequences of falling in to it. But He has made it possible for me to trust Him.
Actually if I look back again, I see that every difficulty, each and every one was necessary to make me who I am today. His plan was really perfect. Now that I think back about it, no other way could have made me a bigger impact on me. Who am I to complain about how my life goes if that was needed to make me get here. I thank God for intervening, showing me the way, guiding, forgiving and providing in the kind and loving way that He has. And I thank Him for providing me with a great family, a great church and amazing friends here in Manchester to help me through and be my role models.
I would like everyone to take heart in that God works in everyone according to his plans. And in Jeremiah 29v11:
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”.
I believe this has been true for me. Take heart that he works in everyone, even those who do not know they don’t know Him.