Lost But Found

"Indeed, the Son of Man has come to seek and to save people who are lost.”
Luke 19:10 (God’s Word translation)

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This is my testimony and the reason I Know the beautiful promises of God are true, life changing, and everlasting.

I am guilty of having a shameful, and sinful past.

In my younger years I made the selfish, and terrible, decision to leave my husband for another man.

The consequences of my sin caused unmentionable pain to myself, my family, and others. The “honeymoon phase” of my new marriage was extremely short lived. Our relationship turned into turmoil within weeks of saying “I Do” at the justice of the peace. Almost immediately, “the thrill” was gone, and my new marriage turned into a living nightmare. Guilt, self-loathing, and regret drove me into a hopeless pit of mental and spiritual despair. When I finally reached rock bottom, and my life had become completely unmanageable, Jesus came to my rescue and saved me…and my marriage.

During this time, a pastor had put a hand-written invitation on my door to attend service at a local church. Before I knew it, I found myself walking into that small church—all alone—not knowing what to expect. I was instantly overcome by the beautiful worship, sung heartily by the congregation. The obvious joy in their voices was a clear indication of their love for the Lord. I was captivated.

The topic of the sermon escapes me, but—thirty years later—I still remember the lovely feeling of peace. Even in my sinful state, it was clear to me that God meant for me to be at that church, at that time, and for that service.

In that small church I learned the truth about the love of Jesus. He came to earth—not to shame, or condemn—but to forgive and to save. He loved me just as I was. Because of his grace and mercy, his blood—shed on the cross at Calvary—washed clean my sinful soul.

Sadly, I had to learn the hard way that Jesus wants only what is best for me—his laws are for my own good and protection. I learned there is no better feeling than knowing I am loved by my creator.  That having a personal relationship with Jesus, surpasses any other relationship on this earth. I have discovered that reading and studying the Bible is life changing—exciting—and that there is nothing more fulfilling in life than serving the Lord.

The more I strive to please and obey Jesus, the more aware I become of my sinful nature. I know that I will always struggle to live a life that glorifies the Lord, and that I continue to fail him repeatedly. However, I will never again believe the enemy’s lies that I am unworthy to seek— and accept—forgiveness from my heavenly father. I never want to slip back into the empty, meaningless life I once led, and pray that I will never take for granted the cost of my salvation.

I recently heard a pastor say that God can use even our greatest sin to bring about good if we are willing to share our experience to help others. My prayer is that somehow, my past can spare someone else the misery I suffered and inflicted. May it offer encouragement to trust that God will forgive any sin from a soul who earnestly seeks forgiveness, and repents. 

I feel incredibly blessed that the Lord has given me a new heart, a Christ centered life, a loving marriage, amazing church, and a pastor who loves the Lord, and humbly teaches God’s truth with passion, and integrity.

“Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.”
2 Corinthians 5:17 (GW)

by Julie Hill