Showing posts from November, 2008

The Day I Came to Life

M y senior year of high school was a depressing time. My relationship with Jason was officially over. As a symbol of my "independence," I cut off all my hair. I wanted people to think I didn't care, but I was absolutely devastated. The grief over losing my best friend was magnified by the increasing pressure to devote my life to meaningless activities, like playing the French Horn. I was talented. But if I was going to live a mere projected seventy years, I wanted my brief life to make an impact on humanity. Playing the horn would not suffice. What I really wanted be was a writer. I once wrote a story about a very talented young girl who was admired by all, but because she saw no reason for her existence, she committed suicide. Nobody found the body for four days. That final school year I found comfort and solace in various existential writers and poets. They were able to articulate the extreme sense of despair that I felt, and gave me the sense that I was not alone in

My Teenage Romance: A Tragedy in Two Acts

I n preparation for our theme of the month, I surfed the internet a bit and came across an article by J.T. Webb entitled Existential Depression in Gifted Individuals . I can pretty much stop here and just have you read the article. It describes my adolescence with frightening accuracy, particularly with regard to interpersonal relationships. Webb states: "Isolation recognizes that no matter how close we become to another person, a gap always remains, and we are nonetheless alone." No example from my adolescence could illustrate this concept better than my high school romance. ACT I: 1988-1990 Jason and I became fast friends early in the 1988-1989 school year. Toward the end of that same year, Jason passed me a note. "Jen, I really like you and I want to ask you to be my girlfriend," it read. That was the start of a whirlwind romance that would continue for the next two years. Jason was the sweetest, kindest, most thoughtful, sensitive, and compassionate human bei

A Fool Remembered

S ince this month's theme is "Testimony," I thought I'd take a break from my own story and share the fascinating testimony of a dear brother in Christ, Jim Jones. Jim had plans of starting his own coven just before The Lord saved him. Here is Jim's story, in his own words: You've probably noticed, choosing a man that has grown up with the name of an infamous cult leader and calling him to evangelism shows our Lord has a sense of irony. I was raised going to a Seventh-Day Adventist church, because that is what my family did. I also attended private church-run schools up through and including two years of college, where I gained a fair amount of knowledge in scripture and religion. I even studied for the ministry. However, a walk with a church as opposed to a walk with Christ wasn't enough to sustain me. Eventually, I turned away and took a path that lead into drugs, the occult and other dark shadows. I practiced Wicca as a solitaire for about three ye

Young, Talented, and Depressed

T enth grade was perhaps the greatest year of my pre-regenerate life. It seemed like everything I touched turned to gold. Academically, I was on top of the world. I got spectacular grades in all my courses (much of the time without even trying), which placed me tenth in my graduating class (of 186). I was now the head of the French Horn section in the school band, and got invited to participate in the All-County orchestra. Upon auditioning, I was named first chair French Horn player (which loosely equates to being the best in the county). The music department took notice of my leadership and talent and cast me as the lead in the school musical. The show immediately catapulted me into social renown among students, teachers, and parents. If that weren't enough, I also won a place of honorable mention in my school's Mark Twain Literary contest. It was quite a year. But it was awful. Underneath the awards and accolades, I knew that everything I held in the palm of my hand was fle

Existentialism 101

M y teenage years appeared to be picture perfect on the surface. I was an academic superstar, artistically talented, and always had a smile on my face. Yet no one knew that beneath my sunny, cheerful exterior, I was hiding a dark secret. Between the ages of 13 and 18, I was a closet existentialist. By the time I was fifteen years old, the philosophy literally dictated my every thought and deed from the moment I woke up, to the moment I went to sleep at night. Upon hearing that I was once lost in existentialism, most people will look puzzled and ask, "What is that?" So before I continue with the remainder of my testimony, I thought I would take some time to address what existentialism is, and why it is so dangerous. Existentialism is a philosophy that is not easily defined, because it has no set definition. Basically, the idea is that life has no meaning apart from the meaning that we create and apply to it. Essentially, each person is responsible for defining himself and

Right Place, Right Time

I n the year 2006 I was blessed to be a part of Evangelism Boot camp in New York. I had that previous year heard the life changing message Hell's Best Kept Secret and had my eyes opened to many things in the faith that were not taught or revealed to me previously. One such thing was exactly what sin is and why Jesus died and rose again. Foundational truths yes! But no one told me anything about them! The only messages I heard were "Jesus loves you so much that he died for you" and that was it. There was no explanation of what sin is or the reason Jesus had to die in the first place. When I arrived I felt overwhelmed with the fact I made it through the flight alone! Born Again.......Again! Well, with feeling like I was born again, again (!) and my heart on fire to evangelise (see my last post) I heard of a ministry that went out, hit the streets using the principles taught by Way of the Master, a ministry birthed from the HBKS message. With nothing like it over here

The Tract that Came Back

This story is a bit longer than usual, but it's worth the read! If you have ever wondered whatever became of the tract you gave to that complete stranger, then let this story encourage you. F acing my mortality at thirteen was a turning point in my life. I suddenly viewed the world as a meaningless exercise in futility. The only hope that remained was my belief in the existence of a God who knew the answers to all my burning questions. In an effort to learn more about who God was, I took very seriously the religion I was born into, which was Roman Catholicism. But after a very disappointing incident on the day I made confirmation, I became completely disenchanted with the Church. That same night, lying in my bed and staring at the ceiling, I was seething with anger at God. "I'm sick of this!" I said to the ceiling. "Why won't you tell me who You are?" I waited for a response. I had no idea what to expect, but I never got one. "You know what?"

Thirteen and Mortal

I t was the summer of 1987. At thirteen, there was not much for me to do aside from having the occasional friend over, completing my assigned summer reading for school, and watching television. One of the television shows I watched religiously was A Current Affair (not to be confused with the Australian program by the same name). A Current Affair was a New York based, television tabloid show that focused on scandals. Unsolved murders and celebrity deaths were a regular topic on the program, but the Summer of 1987 was an unusually popular season for death. That's because August of 1987 marked the 10th anniversary of Elvis Presley's death (August 16) as well as the 25th anniversary of the death of Marilyn Monroe (August 5). Every weekday I watched this program. It seemed there was an endless amount of stories to report about Elvis or Marilyn: how lonely they were in life, how they both tried to reduce their emotional pain with drugs, superficial relationships, and material po

The Mysterious Preacher

T he following is an testimony of one of those amazing encounters when afterwards you ask yourself whether or not you entertained an angel. It was, for me, a life changing moment. My husband and I travelled to Wiltshire with the children to visit my aunt and uncle in Chippenham. I often thought about the spiritual climate in the South West as it is steeped in new age. This is crop circle country and home of the famous festival, Glastonbury. It was this thought that occupied my mind as we made our way into the town centre after parking the car. The walk is a beautiful one, along the banks of the river Avon, with weeping willows draping their branches over and into the fast flowing water. My thoughts began to shift towards wondering about the church and how much of the body was in the area and what it was like for them to live in such a spiritual climate. Suddenly, I found my thoughts being interrupted by what I thought to be some kind of commotion in the high street ahead. As we approa

Why Did Jesus Have to Die?

M y first memories of religious education were in the first grade. I was raised Roman Catholic and every Monday I had to leave school early to attend CCD classes . At that age, the message is made very simple: God loves you, Jesus is your friend, pray to Him when you are afraid, etc. I happily attended those CCD classes. They were so comforting and fun. By the time I was eight, these classes started getting complicated. I was bogged down with having to memorize prayers, learn the names of what seemed like a million saints, and obey all sorts of rules. One thing that always brought me comfort was whenever we talked about Jesus. There was just one thing that puzzled me, though. I kept hearing this phrase, "Jesus died to pay for your sins," but I didn't have a clue what that meant. Because we were often encouraged to be good little girls and boys, I had always assumed that a person enters heaven on the basis of their good works. If I was a good girl, God would then allow m

Love Dare - Day One

A s mentioned in my previous post I have decided to take up the Love Dare. I will be sharing some of my experiences here on Reformed SHEology along the way. Now with Saturday being day one I really didn't expect to be sharing so soon but here I am eager to share what has happened! But before I do I must rewind back to the day before I began the dare: In my prayer time with God Friday morning I prayed something that even surprised me as I prayed it. I'm not in the habit of praying for specific material things that I can quite easily go without. So I was surprised when I felt really led to pray for a laptop. We have a family computer at home and when I need to get work done I don't often get a chance to go online and when I do I can feel quite rushed. I thought to myself how wonderful it would be to be able to work in the privacy of my room and not get distracted. Fast forward to Saturday, day one of the Love Dare. As I went downstairs to get a cup of coffee I decided to

Happy Birthday Reformed SHEology!

F or a good, solid decade or so, I prided myself on being one of those strong, independent types who didn't need to depend on anybody but myself. Relationships were for crybabies. In fact, anything that involved feelings and emotions was a waste of my time. I had ambition. I was driven. I didn't have time for men, especially since I thought men had been given an unfair advantage. Why should I help them? What did they ever do for me? No, I was a Christian, and everyone knows that Christians don't need anyone but God. Little did I know, God was about to hold a mirror up to my face and force me to see what I had been avoiding for a long time: my pride. What you are looking at right now is the product of my repentance. A BLOG IS BORN When I started this blog, I had no idea what I was doing, and quite frankly, I was nervous to put my thoughts on the web where anybody can read them. In fact, the only reason I started this blog was because in October 2007 I had been asked to d

The Miracle Worker

W e have something very special in store for our readers this month. To celebrate our first year on the internet, we have chosen a theme of "Testimony" for the month of November. All month long we will be sharing true stories of God's grace and power in our lives. Perhaps no film would be more appropriate to accompany our theme than The Miracle Worker . And because this is a special month for us, we thought we'd do something a little different with our film of the month. For this reason, The Miracle Worker is our first ever " double-feature " (well, sort of). STATS Year: 1962 (Not Rated) Directed by Arthur Penn, based on the play by William Gibson Starring Anne Bancroft (Anne) and Patty Duke (Helen) Setting: United States, 1890's. Year: 1979 (Made for Television) Directed by Paul Aaron, based on the play by William Gibson Starring Patty Duke (Anne) and Melissa Gilbert (Helen) Setting: United States, 1890's. Based on the life of Helen Keller ,