I was raised in a Christian home, but that doesn’t make me a Christian. We all reach a stage where we have to make our mind up. When I was three my Dad explained to me as a bedtime story that Jesus had died on the cross for me so that I could be forgiven and go to Heaven. I asked Jesus to come into my heart.
When I was nine my Mum got concerned about me falling over a lot and the doctors ran some tests. One doctor knew an older girl with Friedreich’s Ataxia, so they tested me for that. When my parents told me, it was as if all of my dreams had been distorted. I had been singing “all of my ambitions, hopes and plans, I surrender these into your hands.” God had taken my dreams in His hands and would “work all things together for good, for those who love Him and are called according to His purposes.”
When I was 13 I asked our pastor at the time if I could be baptised. I was baptised in our farm river (it was not winter!). I read my Bible through about that time.
In year 11 I asked an atheist at my school to tell me why he was an atheist. I was not prepared and did not have a chance to reply as he delivered his message. He asked me to read a famous book by Richard Dawkins and I gave him The Case For Christ youth edition. I desperately searched for answers out of the void I was now living in. I did lots of research into Creation/ evolution. God was faithful.
About the same time our youthgroup for Church was doing a set of video Bible studies on evangelism. I became convicted that everyone in the world who was still in Adam was perishing, and I needed to share my faith. The first time I did this was at Wellington airport after my cousin’s wedding. I was getting desperate to take an opportunity to share the Gospel. I asked the lady sitting next to me if she knew what was the oldest book in the world. She said “Is it the Qu’ran?” We had a short conversation, she watched biblein11 on my mp3 as I prayed and then she started crying. I asked her if she had ever met Christians before and she said “yes, they’re everywhere.” I was very nervous and excited as I looked for a How to be sure of going to Heaven when we die booklet to give her. She was so thankful.
Since I was nine I have learned not to look down on people who have disabilities. I have learned not to dread the idea of “being in a wheelchair,” which kind of helps since I have been dependant on one for more than two years. I have learned that “Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance.” Romans 5:3