A few weeks ago, we had the privilege of baptizing Gina Killion at Soma Downtown. Baptism is one of the most significant events in the Christian life: it's the moment we publicly acknowledge our faith in Jesus and our hope to be found in his life, death, and resurrection. Here's the testimony Gina prepared for her baptism:
As long as I can remember, I always believed in God. I was raised Catholic and attended Catholic school growing up. I found comfort and meaning in being a good person, having a support system, and being an athlete. It became routine to pray before every class in high school. I would pray privately, asking the Lord to grant my wishes and every so often thanking him for the many blessings that he graciously placed in my life. When I thought about God, I believed that if I did enough of the right things and worked hard enough, then surely I would go to heaven.
Moving eight hours away for college presented with a lot of new life changes and challenges. At the end of my junior year of college, the one thing I loved the most - the thing I found my identity in - was taken away from me suddenly. A hip issue developed, so severe that my doctors told meit would be best for me to no longer play soccer.
I was devastated and began to search for meaning and purpose. I became bitter towards the Lord, as I couldn’t wrap my mind around the fact that he would take something so precious away from me. I was also bitter, as I would have days that I would pull muscles in my legs just walking, my hip was so weak.
The Lord placed two strong Christian girls into my life on the soccer team who had been trying to get me to attend a Baptist church since I was a freshman. I was very stubborn and not open to trying out something other than a Catholic church. I eventually caved in at the end of my junior year and decided to attend a service with them. After attending one service, I started to read my Bible every day. Through reading the Bible and being part of a Bible study with a few of the soccer girls, I started to discover for the first time the true meaning of the gospel.
I recognized that I was a sinner and could never be “good enough” to deserve heaven. The only thing that truly mattered was Jesus Christ and his death on the cross for MY sin. After I accepted Jesus as my Savior, I came to know what it meant to be filled with a sense of purpose bigger than the moment. I am no longer empty or bitter towards the Lord, because I know he took away something very important to me to ultimately reveal something far greater.
Knowing God has brought eternal significance to my life. Now things I do are charged with eternal meaning. Now life truly matters, and every day I wake up to another day of walking with him. I am amazed by God’s grace and forgiveness, as he continues to show me what he considers “success “ and how to live in the only life that really satisfies – a life that is covered by the blood of Jesus.