Evan B.

Evan B.

from KS
Story #538
I grew up going to church. My dad was (and still is) a deacon, my mother would sing in the choir and my brother was one of those guys that literally everyone knew because he was involved with everything which meant I was always defined by the people around me. I went to Sunday School every week without fail and went through all the motions to try and live up to my family reputation. Then one Sunday both my parents went to fulfill their weekly duties and my older brother was off sitting with his friends which meant that a 7 year old me was left alone while communion was going on. I was a bit hungry that day and saw free food being passed and seized the opportunity while my mother watched in horror from the choir loft. They dismissed all the kids for Sunday School and while my mother frantically scribbled a note to my dad after they both returned to their seats.

Later that afternoon while getting ready for a soccer game, my dad ushered me to the basement and had a pointed conversation with me on the importance and significance of communion. He walked me through a section in 1 Corinthians 11:27-34 that was really illustrated not only the mindset we should have when taking communion, but the mind set that we should have as a church which is honest with each other as we examine ourselves and realize that we have no meaning or purpose without Christ in our lives. That really resonated with me and asked my dad further about what it means to be a Christ follower. I gave my life to Christ that October afternoon.

As I grew I became comfortable with the life I had. I went to a private school which had christian influences and friends that I gained through both church and school. I was content and happy. Then as I was finishing my 7th grade year my dad lost his job. To make matters worse my Grandpa was rapidly declining mentally with dementia to the point where he came after my dad (his son) with a hammer in the middle of the night. The combined financial tole it took on our family was hard and I needed to transfer out to public school system. Everything happened so fast I really didn't even have a chance to say goodbye to my friends at school. The funeral for my grandpa aligned itself with the start of the summer camp that our church went on so we had to go straight from the service to camp that week after fathers day in 2010. To be honest I wasn't ready. You would think that a camp to get away from everything would be the perfect thing but I couldn't shake losing him. I was like a carbon copy of him from initials, to likes, to being left-handed that I felt like I lost a part of myself.

It took me in all honesty a full year to finally come to terms and to go back to camp that next year to really recover and move on emotionally. The speaker that year was Jason Petty and I remember he had one specific sermon/speech that centered around the idea that we dig wells for ourselves to find satisfaction, and those wells that we dig never do satisfy where Christ offers us something more. That really resonated with me because I realized that my situation was me trying to fill a well that I created in the figure of my grandpa that I put so much effort into being satisfied in. I needed to find my satisfaction in who Christ is and allow that to be the focal point of my life.

I did end up in a middle school where I knew a few of my really good friends from church which lead me to be an influence to others through high school and college. My dad is thriving at his current job. And most of all, Grandpa is somewhere better. My life as a christian isn't something I can coast through. It's a daily struggle of denying my own selfish wants and trading them for the glory of God. 1 Peter 4:12 says that we should not be surprised when we encounter trials, rather we should expect them as Christians, and be prepared when they arrive in our lives. If I am to be remembered for anything I would want it to be that I chose to struggle for Christ's sake and give up my plans for his which are so much greater.

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