I am so amazed that the Lord of all creation cares for me. Does that thought blow your mind, like it does mine?
As a new believer, I desired, with all of my heart, to show God my gratitude for giving me a brand new life in Christ.
I studied my Bible and asked God to make me wise. I listened carefully when Pastor taught the word. I took lots and lots of notes so I could learn everything I could about my amazing Father and His son Jesus.
One of the things my Pastor said frequently was, “The Holy Spirit speaks in a still small voice, you must be listening when He speaks or you may miss His call.”
One Sunday morning, sitting in Church, I studied the big wooden cross at the front of the sanctuary. I was thinking about what Jesus did for me. He gave His life that so I could live, not just eternally but right here and right now – abundantly! I was living an abundant life because I was experiencing freedom as His child. God rescued me from despair and placed me into His family. I felt huge JOY in knowing that I was loved like that.
I was living an abundant life because I was experiencing freedom as His child. God rescued me from despair and placed me into His family. I felt huge JOY in knowing that I was loved like that.
Suddenly, I heard that still small voice from God. As I gazed at the cross, this scripture verse ran through my mind,”If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23
I recognized the voice of the Holy Spirit, using scripture. He was talking to me. I prayed,“Oh Lord, you have given me hope and a purpose. I want to follow you but I am so ignorant of the ways of God, I don’t know what you want.”
Just then I felt God speak to my heart. This is what I heard (not literally but as certainly as it had been Gods’ voice) “You need to prepare to serve me. I want you to go to Cornerstone College.”
At first, the message scared me. The thought of living so far away was terrifying. Next, my thoughts went to my steady boyfriend. We had planned to get married soon after our High School graduation.
I never planned to go to college. I had my plans made, college wasn’t even on my radar. My home life was hard, filled with verbal and physical abuse. I was insecure and never ventured beyond my comfort zone. Though I was timid, I had big faith. I knew, deep in my heart, if Jesus called me, I would follow Him wherever He led.
Though I was timid, I had BIG faith. I knew, deep in my heart, if Jesus called me, I would follow Him wherever He led.
I knew Jesus was calling me and that I must follow His call.
Right after the Church service, I searched for my youth leader. I didn’t want to push the still small voice away. I needed to have godly input. I told Jan what God had spoken to my heart. Her answer, “Oh Susie, I have been praying God would lead you to Cornerstone.” WHAT! I had no clue, she had never talked to me about going to college. Next, I told my Pastor, and guess what, he too told me that he had been praying I would go to Cornerstone. Never did my Pastor talk to me about going to this Christian College. You see, right there is evidence that God hears and he answers the prayers of those who trust Him.
From that day, I prepared to go to college. My family thought I had lost my mind. My boyfriend was angry and distressed. Much to my boyfriend’s dismay, peace reigned in my soul and I had a song in my heart.
My parents threw questions out like; “How do you think you can afford a private college?” My answer, “I don’t know, I just know God told me to go.” They tried to convince me I was not being realistic. They scoffed and made fun of me .. They would not help me with anything.
I was only seventeen years old but I prepared all by myself. I applied and kept an appointment with a guidance counselor from the college (3 hours away from home.) I shopped and gathered everything I would need as I prepared to leave home at the end of August. I look back and am dumbfounded by the responsibility I handled.
The night before I was to leave, I was packing my belongings, when my mother came into the room. I noted the sadness on her face. She said, “Susie, Dad and I have been going over and over our finances. There is no way on earth we can afford to send you to college.”
They did not have the money. I stopped what I was doing and looked at my Mother. She looked sincerely sorry and I could tell it was hard for her to give me this news.
I answered her, “It’s okay Mom, maybe God just wanted to see if I would leave my home and everything I ever knew, to follow him.”
After mom left the room, I sat quietly on my bed. Most of my clothing was packed and everything else was prepared to go. I was relieved, in a way, because I really didn’t want to leave my home, my boyfriend or my church.
I decided I better call one of my Youth Leaders to inform her that I would not be going to college. I spoke with Jan that night and told her what happened. She sounded disappointed for me and promised she would be praying. She said a group of people from the Church were coming to her house that very night. She told me she would share the news with them.
My boyfriend was beside himself with happiness. He took me to a swanky restaurant and celebrated. The next morning he planned to take me with him to a ballgame in Detroit. He was a little league coach . He was taking his team to see a professional ball game. But, I got sick in the morning and could not go. Do you think God makes people sick and then makes them better in a few hours? In this case, He did. 😉
Later that morning I received a call from Jim, the head deacon at my Church. He said, “Get packed Susie, you are going to college!” Shocked, I listened intently. He said Jan told the group who met at in her house about my plight. They decided to call my Pastor, who was on vacation at the time. Pastor Jones directed them by saying, “You get her up there and we’ll worry about the money later.”
After I told my Mom and Dad I hurried to finish my packing. You can imagine the chaos and excitement that took over our lives that day.
Jan planned to be at my house within two hours to drive me to college. As I worked feverishly, I heard my Mom on the phone. She was saying, “Susie said that God was going to send her to college, and He is! He really is!”
I am forever grateful to God for Pastor Jones and for the godly group of believers who met at Jan’s house and prayed for me. This group made a commitment to contribute to paying my first year of college.That’s one HUGE sacrificial gift.
I applied and received a job on campus to help with my expenses and contribute toward my college tuition. My parent’s pitched in what they could and the prayer group paid the rest. Amazing Grace How Can It Be That You My God Should Care For Me.
because I love you,