Photo by Nicole Tarpoff
My freshman year of college I was depressed and hopeless. It wasn’t like me. I used to chase after what I thought was Jesus and I used to be happy. But my life had changed and I was defined by drinking, smoking, and filling my life with lies and “friends” who were actually just people that were just as depressed and hopeless as me. I would do whatever it took to feel like I was having fun. I replaced joy with temporary pleasure.
Halfway through the year I decided that I wasn’t going to continue living this way, so I decided to sign up for a summer camp. I wanted to go on staff and be a counselor. I mean, I liked kids and I would probably meet some cool people, so why the heck not? Not to mention, I would be getting paid.
The rest of the school year went on and I had Jesus on the back burner. It’s difficult to stop living life in a pattern that you’ve created for yourself. Finally, summer arrived and I was going to camp. To make an extremely detailed story short, Jesus wrecked me. Through leadership, community, and unconditional love, Jesus showed me what life should look like through Him. Leading kids at camp challenged me and put me in situations where I had nothing to rely on except for Jesus and His wisdom. The community at this camp was so uplifting. The friends I made, especially toward the end of the summer, helped to set a foundation for myself going into the school year. I remember praying at the end of camp, asking God to provide me the same kind of community when I got back to school. All I could think about was how horrible the year before was. I had no idea what Jesus was going to do. I came back from camp, got involved in one of the most amazing college ministries in the United States, and never looked back. Jesus has outdone what I asked Him to do, and has provided me with something so precious. I have an endless amount of friends and people constantly pouring into me. I even have the opportunity to pour into others and lead like I did at camp. Jesus can do so much once you make the decision to seek Him and give up everything else for His heart.
I’m learning and growing more and more every day. Each phase of life I go through is showing me more and more about His heart. I can’t wait to see where my faith will be and where the faith of everyone around me will be in the next six months. I know Jesus is doing radical things in this community.
A Million God Stories is a Christ-centered ministry which offers a platform for Christians from all streams of Christian faith to give praise for how God has worked in their lives. Christ heals in infinitely creative ways and we acknowledge that His way of helping may differ from person to person.