How to Have Courageous Faith as a Christian
"For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently." Apostle Paul, Epistle to the Romans, Romans 8:24-25
Just a Name
It's been a few weeks since the launch of this blog. It's finally on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Word Press reader. One thing I noticed is as the posts kept getting pushed out, the name of the blog appeared to be just a name. A title that appeared on a page. It hadn't been explained yet, let alone details of the struggle to be where it's at. It was just a link that was clicked on to learn more about Jesus. And that's the purpose of it. To be an evangelical tool to help others see the real reason they are alive. To know they have a purpose only they were destined to live. But for others to know that they too can have a blissful faith, even in life's most tragic moments.
Without a story, this blog is just a tool. And if any have felt the prodding of the Spirit, that familiar feeling something should be done is known. It can't be shaken. It keeps you up at night when you would rather hide from the thoughts, to turn over and go back to sleep. This blog is the response to that prodding for me. This is how Blissful Faith was made and how you can also have courageous faith as a Christian.
Let's start from the link my testimony left out. How I got here and why this blog exists. If you would like to read my testimony, check out the article "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear." It's at the end of the article. Rewinding a few years, I was seven years old. I didn't know fully who my father was and my mother wasn't fully in the picture. I was living with my grandmother who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and a grandfather who would much rather blame the other half of my family for all of their problems.
They called themselves Reverends of a church they helped build. I was very involved in that church as my grandparents were leaders in it. Singing in the choir was a must. Going to every single Bible study was a must. If I didn't do something right, it was screaming matches. This atmosphere was all I had. I developed a little of the Stockholm syndrome. I hated my life, but I loved the ones who were caring for me. Little did I know at the time, God was using this to bring me to Him.
Beginning of the Unveiling
As a child, I was never allowed to dress up or do things most girls were allowed to do. I was failing in public school. When I was removed from public school and homeschooled, my grandmother did all the work for me so I wouldn't learn. I think, in part, all of this was due to my grandmother rejecting my father and aunt. She was compensating for not having a son, or a daughter. With this said, she forced me to be someone I wasn't. As a seven year old, I was impressionable. I believed what was told to me.
When I was nine, the court case started. My father and step mother ended up winning the court case and I went to live with them. But these demons that my grandparents had allowed into my life traveled with me. God was still using this to develop a blissful faith in me. Even before conversion.
No One to Adopted Child
Social situations like school and talking to people in general were awkward for me. The social skills I desperately needed in my childhood years weren't given to me. I had to learn all of that at a later stage in life. At a young age, my father and step mother put me into counseling since they stated I was still having difficulty coping and believed I had personality identity issues. I had developed a deep hatred for myself, and others. Especially God.
I called myself a Christian because I generally wanted to do good, but that's all it was. A general desire. Truthfully, I didn't care who I hurt. I was baptized around 13 or 16 and thought I had changed, but there was no inward conversion. Just false outward mockery. I truly became born again after my life fell apart and I reached the end of myself and no amount of hatred or self-preservation could save me. It was just God and me now. I couldn't run, couldn't make excuses any longer. After God heard my prayer to be rescued and saved, I finally became an adopted child and started living the life of blissful faith. I was 21 when I became a true Christian.
Doubt is Faith's Twin Brother
Blissful faith didn't happen overnight. When I became a Christian, I begged God to kill me. I fell into fits of depression and thought that if only I wasn't born, people I hurt in my life wouldn't of had to go through what I put them through. Forgiveness truly is a beautiful thing. I did get the chance to reconcile with a few people I had hurt and amends could be made. Not all of them, however. I eventually become acquainted with an aunt and cousins my biological mother hid from me and I eventually did finally get to talk to my mother.
God allowed this season to show me that even though she abandoned me, this portrayed how the relationship humans had with God in the beginning. God allowed me time to witness to her and try to win her to Christ, but her heart was closed to His gospel and we eventually fell out of touch again.
In the military, God allowed me to go on a mission trip and share my testimony and aid others who were far worse than I was. I witnessed a gypsy camp that was so poverty stricken that they burned the new clothes the church we were aiding in the country brought them to stay warm. Sores covered their bodies. Yet, there was a glimmer of hope that could be seen in the children's eyes when we told them about Jesus and the hope of eternal life and not having to endure suffering forever.
How to Have a Blissful and Courageous Faith as a Christian
When I was sent on a medical detachment in the Navy, God allowed work situations to become unpleasant. The honeymoon phase as us veterans call it, was disintegrating and the true intentions of people were starting to sh