I come from a long line of “believers” (in Jesus Christ), and for all of those people who shared their faith stories with me, I am eternally grateful!
I was christened in my grandmother’s christening gown when I was six weeks old at the First Methodist Church in Andalusia, Alabama. Our children and grandchildren didn’t wear this gown when they were baptized because it was over 100 years old and falling apart! But the stories of Jesus which were told by my grandparents, parents, preachers, Sunday School teachers and friends will always be recorded in my brain and cherished in my heart.
Like Matthew tells us in Chapter 6 of the Holy Bible; this christening gown, this possession, this treasure on earth is not what is important. What is important are the treasures we store in Heaven… the treasures of knowing Jesus, loving Jesus and living our life for Jesus! I am so thankful for Jesus’ incredible love for me, an undeserving sinner. I am grateful that he loves you and me and all God’s people of the world!
I worshiped at First Methodist in Andalusia until I graduated from college. At Auburn University I infrequently attended the Methodist Church, but I didn’t go to church most Sundays. I wish that I had been more active in my college years but I guess that I slept through most of the services.
After college I moved to Montgomery and taught elementary school. I worshiped at First Methodist in Cloverdale, AL. Then when I met this Presbyterian named Jack Smith, the two of us alternated Sunday worship at First Methodist and Trinity Presbyterian there in Montgomery until our marriage on January 27, 1979.
On a cold, dark, rainy January afternoon, Jack and I married at the church where I grew up in Andalusia. It had rained most of the day, but when we said our marriage vows, the sunlight streamed in the stained glass windows! Several people at the reception commented about the sun coming through the window and believed that this LIGHT was God’s Blessing of our marriage!
After our wedding I moved to Birmingham to live with my Presbyterian husband and we started looking for a church. We absolutely loved the warm and friendly congregation at South Highland Presbyterian, and we joined this church in April 1979. At South Highland I have grown in my faith through worship, Sunday School, Circle, Bible Studies, and service.
In my thirties a friend encouraged me to begin my day with a quiet time every morning. During this time, I read my Bible, daily devotional, pray and ask for God’s guidance. I find that when I jump out of bed and dash to do the laundry or read my emails and skip my quiet time, I am not prepared to face the day. I desperately need the power, love and strength I receive from God when I spend time with HIM!
Because of my faith in Jesus, I have experienced great joy and I have found strength in times of unbearable sorrow and pain. When I battled cancer the members of this congregation prayed for me, encouraged me, and helped me through this difficult time. During illnesses and deaths of family members and friends, the love of Christ has been shown to all of us in so many ways! God’s love, grace and peace are with us in the storms of life.
When I stayed with my critically ill mother in the hospital, I was upset and I couldn’t sleep. Mama’s breathing was labored, and I was tossing and turning. So I decided that I would picture in my mind that Jesus was sitting in the chair beside Mama’s hospital bed. I began to pray and then when I looked up the most perfect cross appeared on the wall above my mother’s head! That LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS this time streamed through the window panes of the hospital window to make a cross above Mama’s bed! I know that God was telling me not to fret because he had a perfect plan for my mother.
I am sharing my faith today because I feel that it is IMPORTANT that we tell our stories about the LIGHT that Christ brings into our lives. Don’t you have a story that you would like to share? I would love to hear it!
© Becky Smith, 2019.