This is my salvation story. It took place in 2011. My salvation date is October 9, 2011.
I was intimidated by the thought of going to church by myself.
I had grown up in a family that didn’t do religion, so church attendance was not something I was familiar with. I had cousins who went to church and discussed the Bible during family dinners like they knew what they were talking about. I envied their knowledge, but I was too embarrassed by my own ignorance to ask them about it. I didn’t know Jesus, and I didn’t know how to meet Him. I was looking for someone to notice how lost I was, but no one did… until I met Izzy.
Plenty of excuses
We were both undergraduates at the College of Charleston. She was working for the residence hall as a desk assistant, and one spring break, we managed the front desk by ourselves from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. We became really close friends.
Izzy seemed to know Jesus like my cousins did. I confessed to her I was jealous of my relatives’ faith but too embarrassed to actually tell them. She told me about her faith and gave me a devotional for Christmas. I devoured it at first, but soon gave up having no idea what I was doing. I knew she wanted me to accept Christ, but if I wasn’t ready to take that step she wasn’t going to shove me. She invited me to attend a service at NewSpring in Charleston and I was very eager to go. I enjoyed the service, but once I’d returned home to Greenville, the thought of going to the local campus by myself was overwhelming. Religion was too scary to do alone. I had two small children, and my husband was working overseas. I had plenty of excuses.
But I still felt I was missing something in my life. When Izzy came to visit me in Greenville, I was eager to go with her. It was at that service I felt Jesus speaking to my heart through Perry Noble. He explained all I had to do to find Jesus was to ask Him into my life and put Him in control. I had previously prayed many times to be saved, but those attempts had been half-hearted. This time, I prayed fully surrendered to Jesus. That surrender included going to church by myself after Izzy returned to Charleston. I was no longer afraid to go without the crutch of a friend. Pretty soon NewSpring began to feel like home. When my husband came home from overseas, he went with me and the kids.
As I took steps of faith God’s hand was obvious. The day after my husband and I set aside our hesitations and decided to give Jesus control of our money by tithing, a home loan we’d been denied miraculously was approved. I was baptized, became an owner and started serving. As God would have it, I have found myself back at the Charleston campus.
Izzy saw the change in me, but when I told her how instrumental she was in leading me to Jesus, she said she had no idea. She’s now a major part of the community of faith that I have. Living a Christ-like life can be hard, and we’re always talking about things we’re struggling with.
I am so grateful to my friend who brought me to a church that displays the amazing love of God. When my 2-year-old son told me after KidSpring one Sunday that Jesus is his best friend, I knew that Jesus — through NewSpring and the persistence of a friend — had changed my life forever.