Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that two people God brought into my life as a high school freshman in 2004 would be quite possibly the two biggest influencers in my life.
I met J&L as a high school freshman when I started attending the church they were serving at. I mainly went with friends just to hang out and have fun, not really to grasp anything “God” related. Despite running from Christ, I attended youth group every Wednesday, church services most Sunday mornings and small groups at J&L’s home on Sunday evenings. I even got involved with the dance/sign language group because it was what most of my friends were doing.
J&L were there for me, teaching and leading small groups as well as letting me come to their home after school to talk when my family faced difficult times. Despite the pouring out of their love and support, I resisted the message of God’s love that they poured out over me.
In 2007 when I went to college, I never expected that the seeds J&L planted would take root and my entire life would change. That fall I met some friends who were involved with the BCM and I started going and taking part and attending a church in town. The Lord began to work in my life and in November of 2007 I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior. In May of 2008 I went back to the church that J&L were serving in at home and was baptized.
I went back to college and began to serve with the BCM and at a local church. While I was away, I was told about the struggles that J&L were facing in their personal lives due to sin and the devil’s grasp in their lives. Being hours away, most of what I heard was second hand and not very positive. Many people said that they were crazy and I shouldn’t consider them as role models anymore, but honestly as I saw their story of sin turn into one of redemption and grace, I was more blessed by the fact that they had poured into my life and planted the seeds in my life that completely changed who I was and how I lived my life.
Now here we are, 10 years later and I haven’t seen J&L in almost 6 years, until yesterday. In recent months, I had heard more about their story of redemption and how The Lord was using them in a new church and changing peoples lives because of their story.
As I begin a new transition in my life I have been getting ready to join a new church and the one I have begun to get involved with is the one that J&L also serve at. Yesterday I unexpectedly attended Leadership Advance with this church and was able to meet up with J&L again. Not only was I encouraged to see them serving together again, but The Lord gave them an opportunity to pray with me about the struggles my family is currently facing. It was so awesome for me to be encouraged and lifted up by two people who have played a huge role in my life over the course of 10 years and for the most part probably don’t even realize how big of an impact they have had.
Never would have guessed that two people I met in my tiny hometown would play such a huge role in my life. Outside of Jesus, there are not very many people outside of J&L who have influenced me and helped me grow more into the woman I am today. So thank you J&L for all you have done for me directly and indirectly.