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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Thoughtful Thursday: Tiffany's Testimony

Written by Tiffany Hazewinkel

It's no secret that I'm a Christian.  I was raised in a Christian home and made a "profession of faith" when I was younger.  All of my life, I've lived a bit of a wishy-washy Christian life. There were times I strayed from the Lord and lived like anything but a Christian.  Here's the thing. I've always held onto a piece of myself and never fully put my trust in Christ that He and He alone could save me.  I know about His love. I know about His forgiveness.  But I couldn't get past me.  Despite knowing that He's the only one who could save me, I kept going back to what I did.
“Did I pray the right prayer?"
“Did I make a change in my life?”
“I certainly don't feel saved.”
So, I would try harder. I would pray more. I would clean up my life a bit and hope that I would find that peace. I even put on a good face and faked it. I could talk the talk and walk the walk and no one (but me and the Lord) would ever know the difference. 

Well, He had been working on me for a few months and I kept putting Him off. I tried to convince myself that I was safe.  But in Sunday School one day, our teacher asked if anyone wanted to give their testimonies. I thought about what I would say if I volunteered and I came up empty.  I was going round and round in circles in my head, trying to think of what I could say that would convince the class that I was positive I was going to spend eternity in Heaven. Can you believe that??  I shouldn't have to convince them (much less, myself!) that I was confident in my salvation.  In that moment, I realized that I had never truly placed all my trust in Jesus. I know the facts, I know the Bible, but I'd never truly believed and trusted Him to save me.  I determined that I was settling it before I left church that day.

And then. . . Wow!  The message that was preached that morning in church was about salvation and it felt like it was tailored just for me. It was exactly what I needed to hear. Everything I know about Jesus and salvation that I've learned all of my life was in that message and it felt like the Lord was speaking directly to me. So, I settled it.  When the preacher invited people to go to the altar, I went. I finally placed all my trust in Him, the One who shed His blood for my sins. I realize it has absolutely nothing to do with me. It's all about Him. For the first time in my life, I had the peace I had been searching for. I've been trying so hard to live the life of a good Christian, so that I could feel that peace. And then, just like that, He gave it to me.

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