I wrote the following testimony about four years ago and want to take a moment to reflect on what God had done throughout my life. I have faced what appeared to be insurmountable obstacles time and time again. Each time I would panic about how everything could go wrong and anticipate the worst possible outcome. Every single time, God showed me that nothing was ever too challenging.
It’s embarrassing to admit that after all this time I still worry as much as I do. I forgot that the successes in my life are the byproduct of God’s blessings. I deceive myself into thinking that it is through my own efforts and cleverness that everything works out well in the end. The truth is that all of my greatest success take place when I stop worrying and give God control. Here is my testimony:
When I first read 1 Corinthians 1:18-31 as an adolescent, I identified the message within the words as a representation of my life story. For years, I pointed to this passage as my favorite in the Bible and it continues to serve as an excellent reminder of God’s influence in my life.
Adults, especially parents, seem to enjoy speculating about what their child will amount to someday. Beginning as early as elementary school, certain kids appear to stand apart because of a specific skill set or their personality. Through the years, they continue to thrive and everyone watches to see what great accomplishments they will achieve. I was not that child.
My Childhood Challenges
I was a quiet child with a streak of stubbornness. The world I lived in consisted of fantasies and I was rarely aware of what was happening around me or my circumstances. I generally got along with everyone, although I secretly resented being teased by some. I was also the child who spent the morning in kindergarten and afternoon with first graders. When most my age would have been starting first grade, my school created a readiness program because it was determined I was not ready. This was not the only complication in my childhood.
As early as three years old I had been receiving speech therapy. I had the opportunity to go to preschool because the school district payed for me to continue speech therapy. In elementary school, I started wearing glasses because it was discovered I never used my left eye. I was forced to wear an eye patch and receive eye drops, which blurred my vision for an hour or two. At 9-yrs-old I opted for a black contact. I was regularly pulled out of class to receive individual help. In 2004 I was seen by a neurologist to assess my tendency to space out. I was diagnosed with petit mal seizures and given an adult dosage of medicine to stabilize my condition. I was told I would have it for the rest of my life.
My Saving Grace
Three primary advantages helped me overcome every one of these hindrances. A supportive social network, my inability to take no as an answer, and a God who can do the impossible. I stopped having seizures within a year, and a year later they took me off the medicine. Writing became one of my academic strengths despite the roadblocks from my childhood. My weaknesses were turned into strengths. I cannot take sole credit for my accomplishments because I did not start off with the necessary skills. God enjoys using the least qualified because then all the glory goes to Him. I boast in what the Lord has done for me because it is the only thing I can truly boast about.
God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things – and the things that are not – to nullify the things that are .1 Corinthians 1:28
ANYONE who surrenders their life to Christ can accomplish greatness. I don’t mean greatness in getting the best job or being the richest. This is the type of greatest that will improve the lives of those around you. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable about your own struggles can be a source of relief and comfort to others. Our stories of how God has carried us through tragedies or hardships is the very encouragement this world needs. So go and share your testimony with someone today. Boast in what the Lord has done for you.