Hi, my name is Johnny, and I would like to share my story with you.
Have you ever felt forgotten, empty, and alone? I grew up in a very broken home where both of my parents were addicts in different ways. They got divorced when I was about 12. I was blindsided and broken-hearted by that news, and for a couple years after that, both of my parents began to spiral downward. These circumstances often left me feeling like second place. One year at a summer camp, a bunch of my friends gave their lives Christ. When we came home from that trip, we all started meeting together to dive deeper into the Bible and learn about who Jesus was. Throughout the next few months, I began to understand and grow closer to Him.
In the Bible, we learned that about 2,000 years ago, Jesus, the Son of God, was born. He lived a sinless, perfect life and then was executed on a cross. This is the punishment we all deserve for our sin, but Jesus paid that price for us. “God demonstrates His own love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.” Because Jesus took our punishment, the gap that sin causes between us and God is closed. When we follow Jesus, we are seen as perfect in God’s eyes. We are completely forgiven. Three days after Jesus died, He rose from the dead! Death is no longer final. Jesus offers us the gift of eternal life – of living forever with Him in heaven if we accept Him as our Lord and Savior.
A few months after starting our Bible study, one of my best friends was actually killed, and I remember at his funeral looking down and asking myself, "Where would I go if that was me being lowered into the ground?" I really didn't know the answer to that question. I think God used that situation to help me dive deeper into what a relationship with Jesus actually looked like.
The next year, I began taking my faith more seriously. I can remember over time falling more and more in love with Jesus. I was about 17 when I decided to serve Jesus for the rest of my life, and I knew that God had more for me than a broken home and a feeling of worthlessness.
So, if you feel broken, beat up, alone, or let down - if you feel like the world is closing in on you and the closest people to you have marked you as an afterthought, I want you to know that God doesn't see you that way. He loves you so much that He sent His Son, Jesus to die for you so that you and Him could have a relationship. Through Jesus' death, you can have freedom from hurt, loneliness, and the things you've done wrong. He knows you, and He loves you still. He just wants you to be with Him.
I invite you to consider giving your life and your heart to Jesus.
“Lord Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins and give me the gift of eternal life. I ask you into my life and heart to be my Lord and Savior. I want to follow you.”
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