The journey to peace was a process that took patience, time, and learning. Right before I had entered eighth grade, I found a book about trusting God. I had never heard of such a crazy idea. You can trust God, just like you can trust a friend or a family member? Well, I began to discover that I can trust God more than I can trust a friend or family member.
I would say that the most chaotic time of my life was between the ages of twelve and sixteen, right after I made the decision to follow God. Within that time, I did not have a moment of consistency. My parents had gotten divorced when I was about eight years old, and my mom’s new husband and I did not get along. He and his children always made me feel like I was not good enough, and that I could never do anything right. At the same time, my dad was dating another woman who brought me to church. My mom did not want me going to church, but she begrudgingly dropped me off every Sunday.
A few months after I went to youth group for the first time, my grandmother died. This emotionally destroyed my family members, especially my grandfather and my mom. Then, when the school year started again, I broke my elbow and had to get surgery. I missed school for a few months. A few years later, my aunt decided that she wanted to move to Florida. My grandfather agreed, and while my mother was getting surgery, they got up and left.
Although this time of my life was the most chaotic, I noticed that God did not change. While my step family was yelling at me and telling me that I do everything wrong, God was telling me how much he loved me, even with my imperfections. When my grandmother died and my family split up as a result, God told me that he is my heavenly father, and he would never leave me. When my mom would not let me go to church, God told that he would protect me and keep me safe. While I moved from house to house – between my dad, my mom, and my dad’s girlfriend – God told me to trust him.
Over the years, no matter how difficult my circumstances, God had always shown me his love, protection, and mercy. His love for me did not change, even when I could not see the love of those around me. His protection over me did not change, even when I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. His mercy for me did not change, even when I sinned against him.
In the midst of all these experiences, God had truly allowed me to trust him. It would have been easy to trust him if everything was great, but when life was difficult and confusing, that is when God began to grow my faith.