When I was younger, I loved Lego sets. I loved the instructions and how everything fit together just right to create something intricate, and “so cool” as I would describe it. What I didn’t like, however, was how easy it was to mess up the entire design; one wrong piece and the structure wouldn’t be just right anymore.
Unintentionally, I modeled my life similar to that of a Lego set. I craved to be the exact piece that everyone would need to build their own structures. This led to me conforming to be what everyone else needed of me, mostly because I feared that everything in life would crumble and fall apart if I wasn’t just right for those around me.
I had a good childhood, after all, I did have Lego sets. But like most people, my family was broken. Alcoholism and mental illness made for difficult situations, thus fueling my desire to be the peacemaker, to be the “perfect piece” to hold everyone together. This attempt was of course, futile, but nevertheless, I tried.
I came to know of God from a young age, but I was far from understanding exactly who He was and what a relationship with Him looked like. We didn’t attend church very often, until I moved from Staunton, Virginia to Glen Allen. The move discouraged me, I started middle school without knowing anyone, my family seemed to be in a bad place again and I was living in a constant state of insecurity.
However, God is good and somehow, we managed to get involved with a church where I slowly began to make friends and know more about the Lord. It seemed like a perfect combination, and it was for a while. I attended outreach events, retreats and mission trips. I even got baptized, although I didn’t know what a true, devoted life for Christ was.
In high school I struggled with glorifying my grades, friendships and extracurricular activities; instead of honoring the Lord, I fell in love with what the world had to offer, even when it just led to more hurt.
The transition to Radford was difficult, to say the least. Once again, it seemed as though my family was falling apart, I was stuck in a foreign place with no friends and I doubted my ability to even survive, let alone succeed in college.
But my God is so much greater than my doubts and worries. Immediately, I was introduced to Chi Alpha through Something in a Mug and began attending large group services. I was happy to be involved in a ministry with such positive people, but I was still seeking fulfillment through the world. I was so desperate for friendship, that I was willing to do anything, so I headed out for my first party. The two parties that I attended were fun in the moment, but some of the girls I went with barely looked at me when they saw me on campus the next day and that’s when I realized that I wanted genuine community and real friendships, like those I witnessed in Chi Alpha.
So I began attending and participating in Chi Alpha with my whole heart. I learned more about who God is and I began to form a relationship with Him. I read the Bible and prayed more than I ever had, and things finally felt just right. I accepted that Christ died for me, even when I did nothing to deserve His love. I accepted that my identity of chosen, of daughter, of loved could not be stripped away. I finally accepted Him into my life completely, without any hesitation.
But it wasn’t enough for me to give my life to Christ, I had to trust Him with it.
Thus, the enemy tried to deter me from giving God the trust He deserved by attacking my family heavily through a divorce. When it finally felt like I was at peace, everything began crumbling again. I resorted back to being the rock for my family and it was exhausting, but this t