Today I celebrate my third year as a disciple of Christ. A lot has changed in those three years, I have changed for the better. I wanted to take a moment and look back on the man I was in 2015 before I began my walk with God. What kind of person was I?
In March 2015 when I celebrated my 50th birthday alone in my apartment I was a man wrecked with chaos and loss. I had lost my father only five years prior, and only three years prior I had lost my sister to a drunk driver and my mother had a massive stroke and I had to put her into a nursing home. I was very lonely, I had no friends, I had no life. I was a very insecure, scared, anxious, person. I didn’t trust anyone or anything. I stayed in my apartment and rarely, if ever, spoke to people I didn’t know. I was self-centered, always thinking about myself and how I can benefit from doing bad things. I was a slave to pornography and self-inflicted impurity. I hated everything, everyone, and myself. I was miserable and angry. I never thought positively, and I always expected bad things to happen to me. I often told myself when the slightest shred of happiness came over me, “Kevin, you’re not allowed to be happy. When you’re happy bad things happen.” And so I forced myself never to be happy, never to be satisfied, never to be thankful. Misery, anger, jealousy, depression, sorrow, malice toward others, mistrust, hate, angst – these were the words that summed up who I was in 2015.
Fast forward to today, my third spiritual birthday. Who am I now?
In April 2015 I landed my dream job, in May 2015 I not only found my church family, but my biological family as well. I studied the bible, was baptized and began this journey that I am, thanks be to God, still on. Over these past three years I have learned how to love others, I am more outgoing – still an introvert, but a little more extroverted than I was three years ago. I have been in the battle to overcome my sins. I declared victory over my impurity issues in 2016. But there are other issues I still battle such as the use of profanity and telling lies – but by the grace of God those issues have been ever slowly getting better. I have more friends now than I have ever had in my life, my church family, and I have two sisters and a reasonably large biological family. God gave me back some of what I had lost, in a new form. I love my two sisters so much, no words can express that love. I give thanks to God at every opportunity for them and my biological family, and also my adoptive family who I also love with all my heart. I have learned how to deny myself, to look toward the needs of others, to pray for people when I say I’m going to pray for them. My faith in God has grown immeasurably, as has my reliance on Him. Sometimes I have to fight tooth and nail to overcome my anxieties and rely on Him, but I fight as hard as I can to lean on Him.
So in three years my walk with God has made me a happier person, a more loving person and the words that I can only assume best describe me now are: Happy, loving, thankful, positive, self-assured, loving others, trusting God and those around me, truly worshipping God, having quiet times more consistently and striving to be the disciple God needs me to be.
Thank you to my Father in Heaven for all He has blessed me with. Thank you to my church family for the incredible love and support you have given me. Thank you to my biological family for lovingly accepting this lost sheep into the family, a stranger – now a brother, a nephew, a brother-in-law, and (very happily) an uncle.