I prayed to ask Jesus into my life when I was young– young enough that I don’t actually remember doing so. I knew about God. I went to church with my family. I read Bible stories. I memorized verses. I took all the right steps. Through church, I even began attending Awana summer camp.
Over the summers spent at camp, I began realizing my faith wasn’t my own – If I couldn’t remember asking Jesus into my life, how did I know it really happened? One summer I took a step; I rededicated my life to Christ.
Another summer, another step.
Sure, while I grew in my faith, there were some bumps and rough patches. My family moved when I was twelve, so I no longer lived next door to my best friend. As I aged into my teen years, I began dealing with the emotions and challenges of growing up.
God kept leading me with baby steps.
I graduated high school and headed out to college. Cedarville University was a long way from home, and wasn’t quite what I had expected. Yet God provided people in my life. I had my R.A., friends, professors, and even chapel speakers helping to guide and grow me through my college experiences. At Cedarville, I realized I had still been living on the coattails of my parents’ faith. Sure, it was easy to go to church and volunteer while I was at home. It’s what we did. At college, that wasn’t an option anymore.
Going to church? My choice. Serving? My choice.
I took more steps and found the “Goldilocks” of churches for me – the one that was just right for where I was. Through this church, God put even more people in my life. People I needed as I worked my way through stressful classes, a tough roommate situation, little sleep, temptations, and too much caffeine.
Then senior year hit.
It seemed to start off relatively normal. I had a great roommate and a slightly insane class schedule and workload. But hey, no problem, everything would be fine!
Tough friendships, along with all the drama they bring, developed. Work-life exploded. I started relying on myself and telling God what I would, or wouldn’t, be doing. But then, my perspective was dramatically changed.Ten days into my semester I received a phone call from my mother telling me my childhood best friend had died. The next month was a blur of tears, attending classes, doing homework, and traveling home for the memorial service.
Through it all I remembered God – His peace, His comfort, and His reassurance. Step by step, God brought me to the end of the semester. I graduated and started a new job. Step by step, God has guided me through moving out on my own, starting my first full-time job, finding a new church, and taking full responsibility of myself. And step by step, God will continue to lead me onward.
Author: Lauren Eissler