Christian Short Stories

God's Grace
By Kelly Rice

Kelly writes: "I am a college student who recently devoted her life to Christ."

Many people I have talked to recently have told me they do not believe in God, they do not trust God and even that they think He is the bad guy! What's their reasoning for all of this? "He didn't answer my prayers." The thing you need to know about God is, He doesn't have to. There will be times in your life when you will call out for Him and you will not get an answer. This doesn't mean He's not there or even that He doesn't love you. He's simply saying "Not Yet."

God will let you go through bad things. That's just the way it is. He's doesn't do this because He likes to see you suffer but because He wants you to come to Him. Believe it or not, He wants your heart broken. No, He's not evil. He does this because when you are broken, when you are at the lowest of the low, you are at your most vulnerable. When you are at this point, YOU will come to HIM. That was what he was waiting for all those times he said "Not Yet." Trust me, it works. Just listen to my story.

I've been a Christian my whole life. There have been times that I have wavered, times that I doubted, but God has always found ways to reassure me that He's there. I'm sure He's done the same for you, too, you just might not have always noticed. However, as much as I believed in Him, I had never felt the overwhelming desire to change that others claimed they had when they were saved. I never felt the passion people talked about. The all-consuming need to have God in your life. I truly believed that I had been saved but people must just making those things up. I thought they were just being, how should I put this... "Poetic."

Don't get me wrong, I had felt God's presence before. I would call for him at times and I would feel Him come down and warm me, like I was being hugged by a parent. I drew comfort from Him but as soon as I didn't need him anymore I went back to living my own life, my own way. I believed Jesus had died for my sins, I just wasn't ready to give up my life for him. I didn't feel like there was anything wrong with this, either. He knew I loved Him and after all I'd been saved right? My life was going great, I'd just got a promotion and everyone at work loved me. I was living with the man of my dreams (we weren't married.) I had parties all the time and did many, many things I shouldn't have. I was having a great time and everything was perfect.

Then, he left. The man of my dreams, the one I'd fallen completely in love with and had given my whole life too... left. My heart was shattered, irreparable. I couldn't get out of bed for days, lost my promotion, lost my friends and drove myself so deep into the bottle that I ended up getting ulcers. I couldn't believe it. At twenty-two years old I had ulcers! I had to make one of the most difficult choices of my life: either give up drinking (the one thing I had left of my life) or die. That's when I realized, I still had my faith. So I got down on my knees and prayed. Prayed that God would fix my life. I wanted a new boyfriend to love, I wanted to leave my job, I wanted my liquor back. I prayed and prayed and guess what? Nothing happened. I tried again and again, to no avail. He wouldn't answer me. No matter what I asked for, I received silence. Even when I asked just to be happy... Nothing.

So I decided that I was going to go out and find my own. I knew what I wanted out of life and who was He to tell me no? I found my own man and he loved me and that was good enough, I thought. I started my own business. Never really went anywhere but it helped with the bills (if I kept my old job.) Never was able to drink... at least not without excruciating pain. I convinced myself I was happy but, as the days went by, things got worse and worse.

One day I realized that I hadn't fixed myself. I had just blocked it all out. I couldn't feel anything. I didn't feel love for my "fiancé." I didn't feel pride in either of my jobs. I didn't even feel like talking to people. I couldn't stand being around them, not even my best friend. I was still broken. It was worse than that. I was past broken, past vulnerable. There was nothing left inside of me. I couldn't even tell if I still had a heart. I had given it to the world and they had crushed it to dust. So what else could I do? I got down and prayed one last time... I prayed for God. I didn't know what to do anymore. I was lost and completely alone. I had tons of people around me but I was alone.

At first, nothing happened. Then I started noticing a man and, boy, was he good-looking. He had been my friend for months but I had blocked him out along with everyone else. He kept trying to talk to me. Everyone else was giving up on me but he kept coming around. Slowly at first but then it was more constant. He asked me to hang out. I told him sure a couple of times but always backed out. I was engaged after all. Something kept pulling me towards him though. He kept asking and it was getting harder and harder for me to resist. The more I hung around him, the more he opened up to me about his love for the Lord. I began to realize that I wasn't attracted to him because of his looks but because of what was inside of him. I was attracted to His grace that was flowing through this man. I would go over there late at night and listen to him speak about the Lord. We would sit on his bed and talk for hours. One night, while he was talking I thought "I wish other people could see in me what I see in him." Then, this man, out of the blue, looks over at me and says "I can see God working in you."

At that moment, I realized that I had a spark inside of me. The second I noticed this, it burst into flame. The fire inside of me changed my heart, not just my heart but, all of me. I felt more than God's love, I felt His PASSION. Suddenly, it wasn't about me anymore. It was about Him. I felt the deepest desire to go away from my wicked ways and to live for God. Live for him so that everyone could see this light in me. For the first time in my life, I had received God's Grace. I knew right then and there that if I were asked to lay down my own life for Him I would. No doubt, no second guessing and that is a very empowering feeling. It's like the world can't touch you. No one can harm you because you have God's Grace.

See, that's what God wants for us. He lets us go through hard times, not because he's a jerk but, because he loves us. He wants us to receive His grace but he can't force it on us. We have to come to Him. We have to ask for it. We have to WANT it. Unfortunately, we're very stubborn (some more so than others) and we won't ask for it until we are at that point where there's nothing left. God DOES love us. He only wants the best for us and some of us will have to go through the worst to get it. Just keep your head up, keep your faith and one day this WILL happen for you. If there's one thing in life that's guaranteed, it's Him. Until then, I'll be praying for you.

(© 2012 Kelly Rice – All rights reserved. Written material may not be duplicated without permission.)

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