If there was a word that I would use to describe the first four weeks of 2023 it would be unexpected. So many hard, great and amazing things have happened that I didn’t even think were possible. The best part is, it’s only January. :)
My life in the first two weeks of this month was really difficult. I moved out of my parents’ house, said goodbye to my friends, and moved to Fenton Michigan to be a part of Freedom Center Academy (FCA).
With doing this program, I have learned that in order to do what Christ has called you to do you have to be willing to lay down everything you have and to live for the Lord. The overall goal of the program is just that, to “Die to yourself daily to come alive in Christ” and to achieve that goal I have had to make a lot of sacrifices.
Moving away from my family was probably the hardest sacrifice that I had to make. Midway through the second week I was really struggling with missing them. It got so bad that I broke down crying just talking about them. Honestly, a part of me really wanted to quit, but because of everyone that I surrounding me - the other students, friends from young adults, pastors from the church and the directors of the program - I had so many different people to go to for encouragement who saw so much more in me then I think I ever will, that I didn’t want to give up.
Later that same day the other students and I had Life Group at the director’s house where we go to worship and to listen to a teaching. Going into it after having a long day, I didn’t know what to expect. I knew it was going to be good, but I wasn’t expecting a lot to happen. I don’t think I've ever been more wrong in my life.
We started the night off with worship. Sitting in that room where a single guitar was being played and fifteen voices were singing, “How He Loves Us,” it was like I had been flicked in the forehead by God. That flick was a loving flick of course, but it was what I needed in that moment to realize how far God has brought me. There I was with other believers, singing how he loves us and that's when I felt I was where I needed to be. I was home and the night only got better.
The teaching that night was about pouring out everything we have for Jesus. The story that was shared was when Mary took perfume that was worth a year’s wages, poured it onto Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. In that one gesture, she showed the Lord that she was done living for the world, she was done doing it in her own strength, she literally laid it all out at Jesus’ feet and surrendered everything she had and followed him.
From that point on, I knew that what I was here for and what I was doing in Fenton, wasn’t for me. Not even a little bit. It’s all for God and I want to be like Mary daily. I want to surrender everything I have and give it to the Lord. I will tell you that I’m not perfect and so I don’t always wake up ready to serve the Lord, but that’s why this season in my life is so important right now. This season is for me to learn not only how to look like Jesus but to smell like him. In the end, when I pour everything out and I do what he’s called me to do, I want people to know that this girl is a Jesus Freak.