In our small group Bible Study last week, the first question asked was “What was it that first drew you to Jesus?” I had to think about it since it was over 64 years ago. I was 13 at the time . As I thought about this for several days, I finally realized the truth was seated deep inside. I was looking for someone to love me.
When I was four years old, my mother left me with my grandparents and moved away. My two year old brother was taken by his father (my stepfather) and my sister by my stepfather’s brother. I didn’t have a relationship with my brother and sister until we were adults, though we saw each other occasionally during the summer at my grandmother’s house.
I remember longing for my mom to come to see me. On the few times she did visit, I honestly don’t remember anything about those short stays other than my grandpa would make potato soup since that was her favorite. I didn’t see her for my birthday or for Christmas. I remember getting one present from her for Christmas…a white stuffed cat.
A few months before I turned 8, my grandparents told me my mother was married again and was coming to take me away. The thought of being with my mom and having a dad was something I’d longed for, but the idea of moving far away from the only secure home I could remember was sad and scary.
I won’t go into details, but my childhood wasn’t one where I felt loved. My mom wasn’t one to hug me or tell me she loved me, and I heard often how my stepdad wished he had a son. Though those things weren’t meant to hurt me, they did leave scars which I didn’t talk about and even pushed so deeply inside, it took a Bible study to draw out the truth.
My parents never went to church, but I would walk to the little church in the community every Sunday and attend Sunday School and church. I had friends there, young and old. I wrote poems for the Sunday bulletin and participated in the youth group in my teen years. I went to revivals. During one of these, I felt a pull to be baptized, to belong to Jesus. I knew from attending church that He loved me and I loved Him.
As I look back over the years, I see where God always had His hand on me. Through my adult years, I made mistakes. Lots of them. Mostly because I was still searching for someone to love me. My first marriage was one of both verbal and physical abuse. I had low self esteem and he knew how to guilt me into staying. Was I in love with him? No, but I did love the broken man he was and I grieved the loss of the marriage., and deeply loved my children born of that union.
God turned my life around. He brought happiness into my life with a new marriage. That’s when I learned the truth about love. And church once again became a part of my life. God brought me out of the pit into the light. As I study His Word today, I am overwhelmed with the love I know He has always shown me. I trust Him completely, and am deeply grateful.
So what did I do last week? I did hang the Trinity of Peace puzzle on my office wall. I also started and completed another puzzle gifted by my youngest daughter and son in love. I completed some coloring in my Inspire Bible gifted by my oldest daughter, and colored two pictures in coloring books. I also made two more Christmas cards.
Not sure what this week will be as far as hobbies. I have an appointment every single day this week, and I will fit in time for my Bible study on 1st and 2nd Peter. Best of all, this week my appointments are all spending time with friends and family! It doesn’t get better than that. Lifting my cup of tea this morning with a heart overflowing with gratitude for a powerful and loving God, my Father, my Savior, my Comfort. May your week be filled with many happy days. Remember love can change lives and change the world.