My story has just begun

Posted by Lauren on November 01, 2016 at 03:22 PM

I grew up in a Christian home. We went to church most Sundays, prayed before bed and every meal. I went to church camp when I was about 10 years old, and I enjoyed it. I always felt that I was a "Christian" because I believed in God. But my true relationship with Jesus started about 1.5 years ago.

At 20, I fell in love. We were together for a few years, and I would have sworn he was my forever. We struggled a lot financially, and did not meet eye to eye on a lot of things, including spirituality. The longer we were together, the further I separated from God. And then I got pregnant.

Liam was born in August 2014. My world flipped upside down. Suddenly, my heart was not inside my body, but embodied in a 5 lb. 8oz little boy.

I believe that, despite the circumstances that I was in, God put my son into my life for a reason. He opened my eyes again.

About 6 months after Liam was born, his father and I split. It was a difficult decision for me, but I felt it was best for our son. Liam and I had moved back in with my dad, and my life suddenly felt much more calm. Less fighting, less stress. But yet, there was something missing. I played with Liam, smiled, laughed, but none of it felt genuine. I knew that my son deserved better, I knew I had to do something to "fix" me. "Go to church" played over and over in my head.

I had gone to SouthBrook a few times, usually for Christmas, so I was familiar with the church already. Also, my boss and my step-mom's mother are members, and encouraged me to go.

I will never forget the first time I came back. The moment I came back home. The music started, and they started playing "Holy Spirit, You are welcome here". I felt myself break, and I cried. I felt at home again. I felt the peace and the love I had been searching for. A few months later, I was baptized during Big Splash Weekend.

Since then, I have witnessed the love of Jesus many times. He is real and He is with us, always.

SouthBrook is the perfect church for anyone who is skeptical, anyone with questions. They welcome with open arms, and they speak with love. Love is something we all need a little more of in this world, and I never walk out of SouthBrook without feeling love, peace, and hope.

Thank you SouthBrook, and thank you Jesus for leading me here. —Lauren Brickler