Grace Stories
Endless Hope and Peace

I grew up going to church, where my parents had me and my brothers baptized as infants, committing themselves, and those at that church, to raise us to know Jesus. I knew about Jesus. I knew he died on the cross for me. I said a prayer when I was 4 years old. I said I loved and followed him, but it was just words. It wasn’t until 8th grade that I actually began to actively pursue God. Up until that point, I could talk up Jesus. I knew about Him, I prayed when I wanted something, but I did not read the Bible to really learn and hear from Jesus. I started praying in 2005, really reading the Bible, and really began to have a reciprocal relationship with God. He so kindly showed up those first months…small things, evidences that He was real and that he loved and cared for me. Something started at that point 13 and a half years ago: sanctification. A big word to say looking more like Jesus each day; walking like Him; obeying God the Father as Jesus His Son did. Learning to walk like Jesus is a life long process.

My testimony is really summarized in the song O Great God. It starts by saying:

I was blinded by my sin, had no ears to hear your voice.

Before I started submitting to the Bible, I had no ears to hear His voice; and really, before coming to Redemption Hill in 2010, I was blinded to my sin. Those first sermons in September 2010 were like a mirror showing me pieces of myself, my filthy wretchedness before a Holy God. It was then that I came to true (and ongoing!) repentance.

Did not know your love within, had no taste for heaven’s joys.

I was perpetually thirsty. I was looking for love, pleasure, and satisfaction in every place but Jesus. This is where all my sin stems from, wanting to be satisfied in something other than Jesus.

In Jesus, I found “heaven joys.” It was:

Satisfy me in the morning with you love, that I may sing for joy and be glad all my days. – Psalm 90:14

I shall awake and be satisfied, beholding your likeness. – Psalm 17:15

You open your hand and satisfy the desires of all living things. – Psalm 145:16

Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. – Psalm 81:10

“I am he” – the one the Samaritan woman was looking and waiting for with water that would satisfy. – John 4:26

Heavens joys and my deepest satisfaction are Yes and Amen in Jesus, and in His promises…all to satisfy me.

Then your spirit gave me life, opened up your word to me; through the gospel of your son, gave me endless hope and peace.

My hope is in Christ: His death, his resurrection by God, and his imminent return. My peace is now found in Christ. I am not by own, but belong body and soul, in life and in death, to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood, and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven; in fact, all things must work together for my salvation. Because I belong to Him, Christ, by His Holy Spirit, assures me of eternal life and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready from now on to live for him.

Today I am getting baptized to declare before God and you, my friends, my family, that Christ died once for all, and was raised to life, once for all. That He and his Spirit and His Church say, “Come!” Let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let all who are thirsty come; and let the one who desires take Jesus, the all-satisfying, soul-quenching water of life. This Jesus has raised this dead heart to life, and He can do the same for all who call upon His name