Testimony of The Month

"Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work."
Ephesians 4:15-16

Testimony of The Month



A Love Greater Than We Could Give



Hello, my name is Nik and I am a hopeless romantic. I grew up in a life of whimsy and fairytales, not knowing the great love of God but seeking the love of broken and imperfect people. My experiences as a teen and young adult left me incredibly jaded and untrusting of the world around me, so the thought of ever being in a healthy relationship seemed like just another unreachable fantasy.

Before I came to know God, I started to feel loved by His people. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples (John 13:35). There aren’t words that can describe how grateful I am to my (now) church family, specifically the one that never gave up on me—Kayla. As much as I pushed her away, Kayla pursued me even more. It took two years, but by her consistency (and A LOT of prayer) I finally took a literal step of faith and started to open up to the possibility that my life could look radically different. I surrendered my heart to Jesus in the Fall of 2014 and have been amazed by the goodness of God since that moment.

Of course, as a 20-something year old woman, romance was still VERY much on my mind. I remember seeing a couple around my age and I’ll never forget the thought that came to my mind: “one day, I’ll be good enough like her to deserve someone like him.”

One day. I’ll be. Good. Enough.

I was forgiven and made new, but I still felt unworthy of the love I thought I required. Needless to say, it took a lot of mental renewal to start seeing myself in a new way; in the way God sees me. It took time in God’s presence and Word to understand that He stitched me together perfectly… that no matter what the world around me said or did, His love is radical and constant.

Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from Him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God – truly righteous and holy (Ephesians 4:21-24).

After God was able to teach me more about His love for me and my own worth, my own self-image began to shift and change; I started to recognize the value that God gave me. Of course, once I was completely focused on what God was doing, my husband walked into my life. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need (Matthew 6:33). The funny thing is… I pushed him away.

Why did I resist the relationship I so badly wanted since the beginning? I could give a million reasons for my pushback, but the reality of my uncertainty was fear. I was afraid of ruining a good thing because of the track record I had built before God. I was afraid of being vulnerable again. Above all, I was afraid that deep down, I still wasn’t good enough. I still believed that even though God did a miraculous work in me, I would somehow mess it up. What was even more unbelievable was that the man that I was pushing away now was the one I saw in the very beginning. The one that was perfect with the perfect girlfriend that I would someday almost be good enough to deserve. Now all glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

Once I realized I was NOT the same girl I used to be (This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Corinthians 5:17)) and decided to give this possibility a chance, we set firm boundaries and sought the Lord like our lives depended on it. Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again (1 Thessalonians 5:23). We understood that the friendship we had could never recover from a failed relationship, so we spent a period of time away from each other and asked God separately what His plans were for us and if they would work together. During that time, we both felt such a confirmation that has anchored us through all the trials and doubt that we’ve faced so far.

Some may say that such intentional and guarded dating is the opposite of romance, but I would argue that treasuring your significant other the way that God does is the most romantic thing anyone could do. To place their eternal worth above your own temporary desires is the greatest love you can give someone. To treat each other the way that the One who loves us the most designed us to treat each other is a love greater than we alone could give.

God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other (1 John 4:9-11).

*Marcus and Nik were married in October of 2018 and have the honor and privilege to serve side by side in ministry at their home church, His Tabernacle Family Church (Ithaca Campus)

 

Comments 1

  1. What an amazing awesome Father we have!!! I just recently had to have cardiac arrest due to a sudden heart attack. Still taking everything in….and finding out in time that there were more good things that God brought out of this for me…and for others 😉💕. Maybe I could share more down the road. But needed to share what God’s done for me…brought me back to life.
    PS your page is verry inspiring and filling my soul 😉. I thank God for leading you to do this. Be blessed and multiply by His favor in your life 💕💕

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