It's day 2 and I'm hungry. It's hard to see your friends eat around you, but I try to remember why I'm fasting and my hunger pains disappear. Last night I was up and out of bed all night hacking up a lung, so today feels especially challenging. I'm tired, I'm sick, and I'm compelled to just sleep the day away instead of doing anything productive. But I have obligations: homework, Justin....oh and did I mention the HUGE list of homework that is even intimidating to look at? And tomorrow is my first day of work at the police department. There is no time in my life to be sick.
So, in light of the thought that some of my friends from my "old" life may be reading this, I figured I may as well enlighten everyone on how my transformation came to pass. I've gotten a lot of "WOW!"s and "How did this happen??"s that I suppose I should address.
Those who knew me in high school knew I was never openly religious. I had faith (here and there), but for the most part, I was a closet Christian. I expressed my belief through my music, but my personal life was a mess. I was the epitome of a "mean girl", and only those I deemed worthy enough reaped the benefits of my friendship. I dappled in other religious theologies, I played the Devil's advocate in religious debates against God, and I frequently broke commandments that I once swore I never would.
When I came across Trinity International Church and was saved, I was still unable to completely make the commitment despite my desire (and the NEED) to change my ways. For once, however, I was able to find a good relationship with a decent guy, get my priorities straight, and prepare for my future instead of depending on my wit and good looks (haha) to get me out of my messes. I'm not going to say it was ALL Paul that led me back to God, but it was nice to have someone go to church with me again. Being in a stable relationship allowed me to reassess my life and focus on what really mattered. But was I ready for God? Not quite.
When Paul and I broke up the first time, it was like the past year and a half hadn't happened at all. Jenna was right there to pick up the pieces; and she had all the solutions to numb my pain. Not only would my heartache be irrelevant, but I wouldn't even remember him. For two months, I got lost in some....bad news....(some of hers, some of my own). How could God do this to me? I was faithful to Him as a new Christian. I was loyal to Paul. I was trying my hardest! I was a good person now that I had been removed from the bad influences in South Florida. So the numbing continued. Everyday, it seemed like the number of NEW bad influences that I started hanging out with increased. I wasn't praising, I wasn't praying. I was a lost sheep. Undeserving.
When Paul and I got back together, I felt like it was meant to be. But apparently, I was the only one. Others were hesitant and advised that I should let it lie. But like I had always done, I did what I wanted and went ahead with it. I loved him. And until the very end, I loved him. Maybe I just wanted to feel loved. Maybe I just didn't want to feel alone. I really never knew how wrong I was about that.
He was always there; waiting for me to open my heart.
When I sit down to think about why God put Paul in my life, I know that it was because Paul was my gateway to Him. The further Paul and I got from each other emotionally, the more I intimately sought out what path He had laid for me. And near the end, I saw the end. It was very clear that it was coming, and I was ready for it. It didn't hurt because He was there. It was clear that I had bigger things to live for.
So here I am: living for God and trying to be a better Christian each and every day. I am, by no means, perfect. And there are days when I find myself thinking and acting like I did all those years ago. But He keeps me in check; giving and taking and boosting my faith daily. I have a long way to go, but I'm grateful for the friends-new and old-that have given me the courage and support along my spiritual journey.
The good news: only one more day of liquids! Woo!