At Grace we see lives changed and here’s why, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Below is Micah’s story of the start of a new life in Jesus:
“It's hard to begin to even describe how much God has blessed my family and I. This might take awhile. I was not on the right path for a good part of my adult life. I was a dancer in adult clubs. I drank and smoked marijuana. I went to church as a kid and teen. My grandma would take us on Wednesday nights. I guess just somewhere along the way I stopped going. It was hard when I worked til 6 am, and was still drunk. I felt guilty, I guess.
I was in and out of living with family and friends. I have a daughter who didn't live with me for four years. She lived with my grandmother. I just figured she was better off not struggling with me. I moved to Beaumont four years ago and started working at a club out there. I met my husband there. He was my manager. He is also a Christian but we never could get around to getting to church. We both worked til 6 am. We got my daughter back after a year of dating, so she's been with us for three years now. We both stopped working in the clubs. We got married after two years of dating, still struggling through life with bills and our habit of smoking. We did go to church a few times but didn't stick with it.
When Hurricane Harvey hit, our roof to the house we lived in leaked and started to mildew the inside ceiling and walls. Our landlord wouldn't come and fix it. So we had no choice but to move. We didn't have a vehicle so we rented a U-haul and moved back to Houston with my family. My husband got a call from a friend of ours saying his job was hiring. But he had to pass a drug test and well, we smoked marijuana.
We came to Grace for the first time that Sunday and left with a feeling we've never felt before in church. So we went home and prayed about it together, and made the decision to finally quit after years of smoking. He got the job a few weeks later. It's been six months now and we haven't smoked at all. We now have a new house, a new car, his job gave us health and dental insurance, and he has a 401k started. We've been going to Grace every Sunday for six months now and we love, love, love it. Some Sundays he has to miss because he works. But I'm here. We are able to pay our bills without asking for help. Our daughter is doing so great in school, and she struggled with grades and bullying for awhile. But now she is an A and B student, and the bullying has stopped. I just know without God none of this would have been possible, and without Grace being so spirit-filled we never would have been able to change our lives. God is so good and I just can't thank him enough, and can't get enough of his love. He is my high. We look forward to coming to church every Sunday. It's the highlight of our week. So that is what God has done for my family and I in just a few short months.”
God is not a get-rich-quick scheme. In other words, we don’t follow Jesus for material blessings, wealth or the like. However, there are certainly benefits to a life that embraces the Lord. A shift in our worship—that is, taking the focus off of ourselves and directing it onto our Creator—will bring results we’re not accustomed to. Romans 12:1-2 (MSG) says,
“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”
As God develops us we will begin to verbalize what the psalmist said “the Lord daily loads us with benefits” (Psalm 68:19). We will begin to recognize the gifts He has given us, use those gifts for His purpose, and then watch as He increases all types of other gifts, so that we are not only blessed but are a blessing to others.
Let the transforming power of the Holy Spirit work in your life today. Let Jesus be your high, and watch how He changes you from the inside out!