We all have a purpose. You may not know what that is yet, but might I suggest that you start with sharing your story? I’m a firm believer that someone’s life could be significantly impacted by our stories.

We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

(Marianne Williamson)

As I kick off this blog, my hope is that God will use the testimony of my life, not just my past, but of the every-day, as a means to encourage and inspire others to live a life full of purpose. So let’s begin!

You would have thought I had it made. I came from a family who never lacked, and I was always the “good” child growing up. I got great grades in school, graduated college with honors and became an engineer. I was also a very active leader in my religion, so my weeks were filled with religious activity. On the outside things seemed good, but I was a classic case of “don’t ever judge a book by its cover.”

I never would have told you this, because at the time I didn’t even realize it myself, I was afraid of God and thought all He wanted to do was control my life. I thought He could never be pleased, that He only tolerated me, and that He was waiting and watching for me to step out of line so that He could send me to Hell.

These beliefs were due to the religion I had grown up in. This religion teaches a person would have to be a part of their specific church in order to go to heaven, but simply being a part of it does not guarantee salvation. I believed that I had to constantly do “good works” to earn my way into heaven.

Needless to say, I grew up thinking that nothing I did was ever good enough. Nothing measured up to God’s standard, and one wrong move could land me at the front gates of Hell. The pressure eventually brought me to a place where I struggled with suicidal thoughts and inflicting self-harm. I tried to find my value in other things besides God, such as the number of men that showed me attention and my academic achievements. Most of my “friendships” were shallow, so I was also very lonely most of the time.

But my story is one of redemption!

In 2011, I was at my lowest low – promiscuity, drunkenness, anger, and deceitfulness – when God began to open my eyes. As I attended a non-denominational church service, I looked around and saw thousands of people passionately worshipping Jesus. In that moment, I asked God the question, “How is it possible that all of these people who love you so much are going to Hell because they are not a part of my religion?” That question rocked me to my core and had me questioning everything I had ever learned.

I HAD IT ALL WRONG. Being in that religion did NOT equal salvation, and religious activity did NOT earn favor with God.

I learned the TRUTH about Jesus by simply opening up the Bible and reading it for myself. I began to understand that salvation is a free gift and cannot be earned (Ephesians 5:8-9). Jesus offered me that salvation through His death on the cross just because of His goodness and love (John 3:16). It was through reading His Word that I came to understand His great, unconditional love for me. I learned that He didn’t just tolerate me, but that He WANTED me just as I was (Romans 5:8). He wanted to usher me into a beautiful love relationship with Him.

With the truth now revealed to me, I chose to leave everything I knew to follow Jesus. He is worth it and my life has been forever changed. I no longer struggle with depression or suicidal thoughts. Instead, there is hope every day (Lamentations 3:23-24) and I have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). I cling to the truth that God has a plan and purpose for my life (Jeremiah 29:11).

My life is far from perfect, and I am still very much a work-in-progress. But through the pieces of my brokenness God is making something beautiful and amazing. I now understand how truly valuable I am to Him; so valuable that He gave His only Son so He and I could have a relationship.

So why take the time to share, and why did it help for you to read this? Because God is not done with you yet, no matter where you are or what kind of thoughts you have about Him right now. He loves you and He has a purpose for your life. You are valuable and God wants you to have an incredible life. He wants you to live a life full of love and passion! If He would do that for me, He would definitely do that for you. If we want to see God’s promises truly begin to manifest in our lives, then we need to start following Him with intentionality and passion. We need to start living on purpose!

You are valuable and God wants you to have an incredible life.

God has revealed part of my life’s purpose: to help women understand who they are in Christ. I love to see women come to know their true value, so that they can rise up to live out their purpose. I long to see women become an army of warrior princesses who take ground for Jesus.

Now you know a little about where I come from and why I am where I am today. As you continue to read more content on this site, I will be sharing more of my story. But don’t be mistaken, I’m not a prisoner of my past. I merely understand where I have come from and know that God has so much more for me. He works ALL things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purposes (Romans 8:28).

That that includes you! So what’s YOUR story? What has God done in your life? Would you take the time today to really think about what how He’s blessed you and then share that with others?

They triumphed over him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.

(Revelations 12:11-NIV)