This is my first Faith post of the year — mostly because I’ve been waiting to hear from God. Yeah. This year I’m being called to share my life as a testimony – and provide more insight on the struggles faced by young believers as experienced by me. Never been one to over share, or one to trust my experiences and past mistakes with others — so when God told me to head down this route — a route that’ll require a breach in the mystery that is Kristina Asamoah — I took a couple of weeks to pause, and NOW it’s time to obey.
I’ve been in the church since birth, but only came to know Christ for myself in 2010. Many may not understand what that means entirely. 2010 statistics reveal that Christians make up 32% of the worlds population, but are all these people living for Christ? I surely was NOT — although I would have very well identified with that statistic prior to 2010 — Until God changed my mind.
During middle school and high school I lived in Atlanta, GA where I think it’s safe to say I’ve accumulated some of the fondest memories of my life. I went to church regularly and was raised to love and trust in God. The truth is, I didn’t get it — Christian was just a title and I was simply born into. My family was — therefore I was kind of deal. I thought given my parent’s Christianity that I would eventually go to heaven by default. It was a sweet deal really! I’d live life [with no sacrifice at all] and arrive at the pearly gates following my last breath. I had no clue that by identifying as a Christian there was a standard that I had to meet. “Christian” to me constituted church attendance and doing ‘good’ overall. What the heck is “GOOD” anyways? I’m sure I’ve seen Criminal Minds episodes where the unknown subject figures he/she is giving back to the world by taking away lives (Pretty relative term if you ask me). Without a standard to live up to, I lived how I wanted – and at that age of adolescence — I basically lived to fit in. Any middle/high school aged youth can probably relate. Sticking out in your teens isn’t exactly the end goal.
So living to fit in for me went a little like this:
– I had my first kiss in the 6th grade
– My first bf by the 7th
– I attended my first house party in grade 7
– Went to my first club by grade 9 [Lawd, I hope my parents don’t read my blog :S]
SO What! — Some may say. What’s so wrong with that? — It sounds like the course most young people walk! — Many young people DO break the rules and lead lives that include activities intended for adulthood — True. But being young and naive is more dangerous that one can ever imagine. All these firsts in my life were nothing more than seeds that were being sown that would eventually bloom into a full blown lifestyle that would not be pleasing to GOD. Unfortunately, some people’s blooms never die.
*** Now before you keep on reading please remember that I identify as a believer in Jesus Christ. I believe in the Bible and resurrection of Jesus for my sins. By identifying as a believer I was created to live my life according to the word of God — adhering to it’s promises and life saving instruction. Some may read on and think what’s the big deal with the way you’ve lived your life, but remember that as a Christian and for the sake of this post — my aim is to focus on all the things in my life that have contradicted the word of God.
—– So, during high school I lived to please myself. Before even attaining a high school diploma I’d become a serial dater, an under-aged party-er, and a liar — OH, and even began drinking and smoking socially. And after practicing ‘divorce’ (in essence) with all my adolescent boyfriends – I entered into my first “SERIOUS” [Not so serious lol] relationship that would add fornicator to my quickly accumulating list. But I can surely say that it was during this time that the Lord began to really call me. I mean he must’ve been YELLING my name because I’d never felt so guilty for what I perceived to be no reason at all. I still had a fruitless relationship with God. As a girl with an extremely loving family and loyal group of friends — deep down inside, I was so empty. I guess, like many young people, I figured parties, boys, and “friends” would make me happiest. I mean, that’s what all the songs and movies portrayed. I was simply a product of my environment; a photocopy of all I’d seen and heard since birth. And once sex entered my life — I quickly realized that something was direly missing. After a year or so in this “serious” relationship — I was let go from a fallacy that at the moment I couldn’t imagine liberation from. Not on my own at least.
—- And following that relationship were a couple more. At this point I’d started university and began to meet new people. More drinks, parties, and lies. I still did what I wanted — and noticed this void I touched on earlier growing larger. Every mistake and bad decision hurt more than the previous and I was fed up. — Thank God that he decided to step in when he did. I began crossing paths with many believers whose lives spoke and appealed to me. At that time, I thought it was by chance, but today I know that God heard a prayer that escaped from my soul, yearning for that same subtle joy, happiness, and confidence they had. I didn’t even open my mouth — I barely knew what I needed. But God knew. I just knew I wanted a joy that would not compromise self.
I started attending a bible study group upon invite where my heart began change. I’d heard the Gospel of Christ SOO many times before [every Sunday really] and knew the word of God at surface level. This time it sounded so different. At that point of vulnerability – where I wasn’t distracted by myself, the word of God had become attractive. The Bible says — “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you” (John 15:16). This scripture was made true in my life. God was simply waiting for me to need him enough to embrace an open mind. I was always called – I simply couldn’t hear with the noise that was my life. The word of God that I’d been forever exposed to sounded brand new — and that’s exactly what my life would become.
After deciding to live for Christ – Internally I felt restored — but it became very hard to explain this change to those who couldn’t see my core. I didn’t care to party anymore – I didn’t care about leading meaningless relationships — and my overall walk and talk had become more deserving of that CHRISTIAN title I’d once misunderstood. Once I realized that I no longer fit in – It got real. I consistently had to decline plans with friends because the plans no longer appealed to me. Most of my friends were “Christian” — So what was I trying to say by declining activities we all once participated in? I’m a Christian too – they’d say. — What’s the big deal? …………… #NoComment. People felt as if I was oppressing myself, while deeply wishing I could continue in my old ways. But what most didn’t and don’t understand is that being born again is literally that. I had changed from within – Given a new heart and mind – and there was really no turning back. And the times I did desire to give in and continue in sin, I noticed that it wasn’t because I genuinely wanted to — but mostly because sticking out like a sore thumb had become exhausting for a girl who had always blended in. Blending in was comfy, but at this point in my new relationship with the Lord, I knew I needed him more than anything else. He’d woke me up and saved me.
With all this said — I can happily say that today I love and live for God. I’m not perfect — and never even want to give off that impression. I have my struggles like the next guy — But I try hard to please God and modify myself daily. Today, because of God’s grace — I have a meaningful relationship with a Godly man that is more intimate than any pre-marital relationship involving sex. I say this not from imagination — but through living it firsthand. I’m confident because I know what God has done for me and I know that he works all things out for those who love him. God provided opportunities for me to trust in him and for my faith to grow as I learned to depend on him. There ARE and will be HARDSHIPS DO NOT get it twisted – really hard days — but with Jesus you can rest assure there is always a larger purpose than can be seen. Your struggles in Christ will shape you and make you more confident and sure in him who you’ve decided to trust. I’ve trusted God to send me a faithful man — and he’s here. Trusted him to help me finish university — and I did! I trusted him to move my career towards an industry I am passionate about — and he did. He provides, but our faith and his grace is what compels him. *Matt 17:20
Seek him silently from your heart. Ask him for a friendship.– He’ll work out the rest.