I grew up in the church and cannot remember a day when I did not believe that God was real and the Bible true. However, I often felt alone and disenfranchised while attending church. As an adult I traveled a lot and hopped from church to church without connecting. Attending church was a duty that I performed. I learned from Scripture academically, but it did not add any joy to my relationship with God. Eventually, I decided that I could be a Christian and believe in God without attending church.
Living without church I neglected my relationship with God, and seldom prayed. I had no accountability in my relationships and rationalized many sinful behaviors. On the outside my life was full and successful, but I knew that there was an emptiness. I couldn’t reconcile what I believed to how I was living.
I began seeking a church and beginning to live my life differently. It was at this time that I met my, now, husband. At the time he was a relatively new Christian, with infectious joy and faith. We both wanted to find a church where we felt like we could belong. Eventually we were led to a place that changed my life, and view of church.
As we attended our new church I found a community of people who truly loved God and each other. It was the first time I saw and experienced God's love and Grace within a community of faith. I looked forward to going to church each Sunday. Attending church became more than a duty, and learning from Scripture became more than empty academics. I was better equipped to apply God’s teaching to my life, receive grace and extend it to others.