I can’t wait for Sunday so that I can be at Church. My 16-year-old self never thought I would say that. Like most Americans, I was raised in a Christian household. I had to go to Church on Sunday or be grounded for the week until I went to Church again. So, as any teenager would do, I rebelled, really thought I didn’t need God, and decided I would rather be grounded for the week than go to Church.
Boy, was I miserable.
Fast forward to college. Everything was moving so fast and life was so exciting. I had amazing opportunities in college, from leadership positions to studying abroad twice, to competitive internships. God was blessing me but I didn’t give him the credit. I worked my butt off, I earned this, what does God, some Divine Being out there that I’ve never interacted with, have anything to do with the product of my hustle? My relationship with God was only a little, selfish prayer I would say before I checked my final grades or a prayer before I took an exam I didn’t study enough for. If I was ever asked if I was religious, I would say, I was raised Christian, but I’m not like, crazy Christian, you know? I believe there’s something out there but I don’t know if it’s God.
I moved to Miami the day after my graduation. Life was perfect. I was living a life that I could only dream of. Chic, exclusive parties, yacht parties, day trips to the Bahamas or the Florida Keys, fashion shows, paparazzi attention… Who’s God? Everything was so good and perfect in my life, I never needed God. I never thought about it. If I drove by a Church I would think back on the days when my parents dragged me to Church every Sunday, smile about those stupid days when life seemed hopeless, and carry on with my music, perfect life, and daily battle with Miami traffic. Somehow, most of the people I ended up working with in my network was religious, and we would have a conversation about God. I would just say my “I was raised Christian but..” speech.
After getting my wisdom teeth taken out last year, I was put on antibiotics for about a month, along with high doses on Ibuprofen for the pain. The Ibuprofen caused my stomach to bleed and I ended up losing my appetite completely as a side effect of the antibiotics. Of course I’m being dramatic and there are many people out there that have much more to worry about than this. For me though, it was terrifying. I lost my appetite for about 2-3 months and I thought I would never get it back. If I saw food or thought about food, I would get nauseous. If I took a bite of food, I wanted to vomit. Not being able to eat made my body weak and I was dizzy all the time. I was desperate to get my appetite back.
Skin and bones and at 98 lbs, I consulted my naturopathic practitioner, who is a faithful Christian. She gave me holistic remedies to support my digestive system, but also talked to me about the way God works and said that you are the closest to heaven when you are down on the ground. It hit home because I was so miserable and sick that I was praying to God, begging him to restore my appetite. I would have done anything to be able to eat and to gain weight. I went to Church as many times as I could, sometimes twice a week. I just wanted to get better. After a while, I started to realize that I was developing (or re-developing) my relationship with God. I somehow knew that everything was going to be okay. I had no fear.
It doesn’t matter when or how I got better. It could have been the holistic remedies, it could have been time… of course I give the credit to God, but the bottom line is that when my life was perfect and everything was going great, I didn’t care about my relationship with God. I had to be sick and desperate for help for me to suddenly acknowledge the existence of God. Looking back, getting sick was the best thing that could have happened to me. I am so excited about life, I’m excited about my relationship with God, and as silly as it seems, I’m so excited for Sunday so that I can worship with my community and hear a sermon that will inspire my lifestyle.
Ever since then, I have been giving all of the glory of my success to God. He has blessed me so much in my life, and it has only gotten better after I rededicated my life to Him.
I am not perfect. I still slip up. I will catch myself sinning every now and then…but you know what? Humans aren’t perfect. We sin, we fall into temptation, we mess up, and this is the exact reason why Jesus was crucified. Don’t ever think that you’re not good enough to be Christian. Trust me.
I felt like I had to share this on Lady Code because it has been on my mind lately and I feel like it’s the right thing to do. Even if this story motivates ONE person, that’s enough for me. If you’ve become an “ex-Christian” (like me in my college and Miami years), take a moment to pray. I know that you know He’s been looking out for you, so just say a little thank-you prayer 🙂 God is too good for me to NOT give Him credit for everything, so consider this one big, sponsored post for God.