The Testimony Of God's Grace!
I would like to start by sharing one of my favorite verses with you; Matthew 6:33 " But seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you"
For many years I believed this verse with a very limited understanding of what it meant. Since I was raised in a good Christian home, read a Proverb every day, and I prayed when I needed help out of difficulties, I considered myself to be a petty good Christian girl, and I was certainly glad I didn't have the problems some people had. But, deep down inside I knew I was just as sinful as anyone else, and even though I did have good actions on the outside I knew my heart was desperately wicked. I knew I wasn't saved, I still tried to act good, so no one else would notice my faults.
Suddenly, and without warning, my world of hypocrisy and deception was revealed when in the summer of 2010 my Mom accidentally happened to find the National Bible Bee website. She was super excited about the whole idea of having us dig into the Word together as a family, so she signed us up for the program, and thus began what I would like to call the great change in my life. I remember that first Bible Bee meeting clearly, because I went to it thinking that since I had memorized Psalm 119 about 10 years before, I would probably be great at this Bible Bee thing, and I was sure it would be super easy. At the end of the meeting I went home in shock over the fact that I had to memorize 800 verses and keep them memorized in less than 10 weeks.
Within 2 weeks of starting the Bible Bee I couldn't take it anymore. Studying the Bible, and memorizing verses for most of the day, was too much for me to handle. My heart knew I was a fake, and the only way out of feeling guilty was for me to try to find a way to get out of the Bible Bee. So, I formulated 10 reasons why I didn't want to do the Bible Bee anymore. I decided to present my reasons to my Dad, and be done with the Bible Bee once and for all. However, much to my surprise, my Dad didn't agree with my desire to stop the Bible Bee, and instead, he asked me to think of 10 benefits to completing the Bible Bee. I took some time to think and pray about my Dad's request, and I was amazed at how quickly the reasons to continue the Bible Bee came, and far outweighed my greatest problems with it. I realized that God wanted me to continue in the Bible Bee, even if it was going to change me.
Over the course of 2010 God used the study of Colossians in the Bible Bee to show me myself in the light of His grace. Never before in my life had I realized the reality of my sin and the great debt I owed to such a magnificent God who created all things and by whom all things consist. Over the course of my time in the Bible Bee I grew closer to God than ever before, and learned what it means to completely surrender to Him. I recognized my inability to love God on my own, and I learned the true meaning of a relationship with Christ, and how sufficient He is to satisfy every longing of my heart. Since competing in the Bible Bee I have had my share of struggles, temptations, and challenges, and I have recognized my inability to live one moment without the strength of Christ. God has used the Bible Bee to bring me to a complete realization of Salvation. I have been equipped with His word, and a personal relationship with Him to face all the challenges and struggles that life may throw at me, and that has got to be the greatest ongoing endeavor of my entire life! " For with God all things are possible"