(To catch up on the first installment click here)
Suddenly, I was unable to move and held captive by every word they said.
Then, from the depths of my soul a voice whispered…
“Jennifer, will you go for me? Jennifer, will you go?”
The cross flashed before my eyes. I saw Christ, dying for the nations…for me. How could I refuse Him? How could I resist such love, such marvelous mercy?
“Yes, Lord. I will do whatever You ask of me.”
I knew that a love so amazing, so divine, demanded my soul, my life, my all.
The next few months were a whirlwind of learning. It was as if I suddenly sprouted wings and could fly. My focus was different…I was different. The things that used to matter to me, well they just didn’t anymore. I stopped worrying about boys, clothes and whether or not I fit in. For the first time I actually felt God speak to my heart through His spirit. I was set apart and it filled me with joy. I learned how to listen to Him and He would speak to me.
“I want you for myself, for my purpose child.” I heard Him say often.
I also started reading the Word. That too had changed. All of the sudden everything I read made sense. I saw things I’d never seen before. And some of it astounded me. Some terrified me.
I saw suffering.
I saw how those who were faithful to God suffered tremendously. Some were tortured. Some were ridiculed. Some had everything taken away from them. And some were killed. This turned my world upside down. One verse in particular really popped out to me:
“My goal is to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death.” (Philippians 3:10)
“I have never suffered. I’ve always had a fairly good life.” I thought a lot about this fact.
I couldn’t get over the seemingly equal correlation between knowing more of Christ and suffering in this life. As I read the scripture and the biographies of many great men and women of the faith, I saw how many of them suffered their whole life long for the sake of the gospel. But if that was the cost of following Christ, I was going to take the risk.
At first nothing really changed, but I was soon to embark on a journey that would change me forever. And it started in the most unexpected way.
“Jenny, we’re going to Disney World this weekend!” my mother announced.
To be continued…