I was saved at the age of eight, but I am going to start a little before that. When I was around 5 years old my cousin and I were playing and she started telling me about the latest Nightmare on Elm street movie that had come out. Of course the more she told me about the movie the more scared I started to become. Then she told me not to worry because all I had to do was ask Jesus to come into my heart and he would protect me. Well that sounded simple enough so I repeated "Jesus come into my heart" over and over every time the image of Freddie Cougar came into my mind. So for a while after that anytime I was scared or worried or did something wrong I would just close my eyes and say Jesus come into my heart and in my mind that made everything OK. Over the next year or so I probably repeated the phrase at least 1000 times. Thankfully my story does not stop here ;)
I am the oldest of four children and grew up in a single parent household. As a child I went to Victory Baptist Church in Bowling Green, KY. My uncle, Danny Mooneyhan was the associate pastor at the time. He also worked with the youth a lot and drove the church bus. He picked us up on the church bus every Sunday morning to go to church. I remember so far back that I remember being in the nursery even at the church. When I started Kindergarten my teacher was Mrs. Paula and in 1st and 2nd grade my teacher was Mrs. Connie Kessinger. Both of these teachers had a hand in preparing me for my decision to follow Jesus. I can still remember learning about the Bible in both of these classes. I even won a Bible in Mrs. Connies class for memorizing Psalm 23. Anyway it was My 3rd grade teacher Mrs. Sharon Meridith who helped to lead me to the Lord. Every Sunday at the end of class she always shared the gospel with us and told us if we ever had any questions to come and see her after class. So slowly over several Sundays I felt confident that I was ready. I believed in Jesus and understood that I was a sinner. I believed that God sent his son to die on a cross for my sins. I was ready to give my life to Him. There was one small problem....... We had one of those preachers who liked to jump around a little and shout a lot and one Sunday he called me out for talking in the service in front of everyone (by the way I was sitting next to his daughter and had only leaned over to ask her a question) so I was scared to death of him. He was my only obstacle in coming down the isle to give my life to Jesus. Sunday after Sunday I stood there during invitation gripping the pew wanting so bad to walk down the isle. I dreaded going home because I knew it would be another week of worrying that I hadn't done it yet. Finally one Sunday I knew I had to do it. I put on my favorite outfit (a purple skirt and top with white lace trim a friend had given me) I went to church and right before the invitation our preacher pointed out some of the sunday school teachers to be on standby if needed. That's all it took as soon as the music started I released my death grip on the pew and floated down the isle. I went straight to Mrs. Meridith and she took me to a classroom and led me to the Lord. I felt like a feather!! I was so happy. I had been ready and waiting for this moment for weeks. I had finally learned over a period of time that there was more to my 1000 pleas of "Jesus come into my heart" I do however miss that childlike thinking. Whenever I said it I truly felt relief as a 5 year old. I had faith that God would protect me from the monsters. I also remember after being saved I had this desperate need to go around to different family members and ask them if they were saved because I wanted them to be in heaven with me someday. As a child I wanted to make sure that all the people I loved would go to heaven. It really weighed heavy on my heart thinking that what if they wouldn't be there? Where did that desperation go? I remember always knowing that God was watching over me and that he saw everything. I couldn't hide from Him. When did I forget that? And it's not that I forgot it or that my desperation is gone, it's just that as I got older I started getting to complacent and started to step into my little box with God and not share Him like I should. God can't be contained in a box. I am so excited about the opportunities God has blessed me with in my life and I look forward to stepping out of my box more and more and sharing and serving Him in the future. Thank you God for your faithfulness. Thank you for your love and protection. Thank you for not giving up on me and thank you for the joy you placed in my heart at such a young age. A joy that even during trials I still have. I love you and want to always continue to serve you faithfully! When I serve you and do things for you I want people to see you in me! I want all the glory and honor to go to you Lord! As I write this prayer I claim Romans 12: 9-21
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honour. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit., serve the Lord . Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Love in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord. To the contrary, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.