Paula in a tree

Sometime I get nervous to tell my story, but let’s just have fun and do this.

At my church, the pastors have encouraged everyone to be brave enough to share their faith by sharing their story.

I become a part of the launch team for a new book by Mary DeMuth, entitled Everything, which will come out in October. In it she shares her story of how Jesus become her everything, and what He means to her.

It’s quite convicting.  I feel I should add to the list of people willing to put their story out for all to hear, especially since we’re discussing faithfulness this month.  When I think of the real meaning of faithfulness, I think of prophets, disciples, individuals who lived their faith in God in such a way as to inspire other people.  Their faith in God filled up their being so much, it overflowed onto others.

I want to do that too.  Don’t you?

So, here it goes.

My Story

I grew up in a split home.  Parents separated in two different locations and two completely different lifestyles.

Dad, the player, the money man, lived in his own duplex away from our home.  He worked hard every day of his life and felt it entitled him to play hard too.  He dreamt of becoming a millionaire (and achieved his goal), though he never enjoyed the benefits of his labor.  He had a girl friend on the side, owned various properties, and I saw him when he occasionally picked me up for school or took me to work with him.

To Dad, God was a name in the clouds, someone who wanted to interfere with his life plans and goals.

Mom, the constant, faithful, gentle presence.  She longed to remain at home with me and my brother but needed to work, because Dad shared nothing.  She took us to church every week and made every possible effort to live her faith in Jesus before our ever watchful eyes.  I cannot remember a time she didn’t make herself available the moment I asked for help.  She also always pointed me to the One who could help in ways she couldn’t.

When I was 10 years old, my father, brother and I were in a dramatic car accident.  Dad died on location and my brother and I went to the hospital with multiple broken body parts.  In spite of Dad’s drive to do and acquire things, I adored him and felt devastated at his loss.  Mom continued to point me toward God’s presence even in the pain.  She helped me to see God’s caring hand on me and my brother.  She taught me Bible verses so I could hear God’s voice better.

As an experiment, I decided to be serious about prayer.  If God really cared about me, then I could talk to Him about anything, right? So I did.  I yelled at God for the loss of my Dad, I cried about our change in life style. We had moved to Arizona after the accident to be nearer to family. It terrified me, and I felt lonely.

As I read God’s word, I talked to Him and even asked for help. I discovered His strength, encouragement, and ability to help in unexpected ways.  He didn’t always say, “yes,” to my requests, but I discovered He did respond.

Over time, I developed a prayer journal where I wrote my prayers and checked off when I realized an answer had been given, whether the answer was “yes,” “no,” or “maybe.”  I started seeing and realizing God’s presence in all sorts of circumstances.  Through this prayer time, I discovered different kinds of answers: peace when it made no sense, joy in the midst of pain, excitement for the faith of others, and contentment in multiple circumstances.

Jesus became my best friend.  Then, eventually I trusted Him as my King, the ruler of my life.  As He helped me to tear down barriers of fear, I eventually accepted Him as my heavenly Father.  The Dad who had always been available, no matter what.

My Everything

In essence, Jesus became my everything.

I guess that’s why it appealed to me to be a part of Mary’s book launch.  She asked the team to make videos and share how Jesus became our everything.  Here’s my short snippet.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nS2RzArkVzw[/youtube]

If you would like to see sample chapters from her book, she’s letting me give this little link away to you special readers. Hover over it and click.

Everything: Free Sample Chapters

 

 

 

Your Story

I would love to hear your story too.

Is Jesus your everything?  If He is, how did you make the choice to accept His leadership in your life?