My story begins like it does for a lot of people, I was raised in a Christian home but stopped practicing in my teenage years. In the decades that followed, I always felt like something was missing. I tried filling it with astrology, the universe, and the “Think and Grow Rich” philosophy. Eventually in 2013, I found Joyce Meyer on early morning television. At the same time, things at work were be restructured, and I knew the changes would eventually trickled down to my level. Not knowing how the changes would affect me, I took Joyce’s advice and just starting talking to God. I confided in Him, telling Him I was worried I couldn’t do it, and I asked Him to just prepare me as much as He could.

My conversations with God went on for about a year. Then, one day I heard Him say very clearly, “It’s time to get a Bible.” That’s when I was introduced to who Christ really is. I began seeking His word in every way possible. I continued to watch Joyce Meyer on television and ordered her CDs for my car.  I found Christian radio stations with worship music and rebroadcast sermons. When I would hear Scripture verses quoted, I would go home that night and read the chapter. I would allow that Scripture to lead me to others. I would write down encouraging verses on index cards and carry them in my pocket so I could read them periodically throughout my day.

Becoming immersed in the Bible led to having a lot of questions. I began to pray to God about returning to church. I knew what type of church I did not want to go to, but I was leaving the rest up to God. When I was in my car and passed a church I would ask God if that was the church I should go to. I would go home and look it up on the internet and pray some more.

Not hearing from God for a while, I asked Him for a mentor. I was thinking of Pam, my friend from thirty years ago, whose faith was very important to her. Even though I was leaving it to God, I wasn’t quite sure how it was going to work because we live almost an hour away from each other; she in Landover Hills and me in Silver Spring.

Continuing to think about Pam, I checked on her through Facebook and read that her husband had died suddenly. Thankfully, I was able to make it to the viewing and with a later phone call told her about my journey.

When I asked her to be my mentor, she said yes but also asked me if I wanted to join her small group. I was excited at the thought of studying the Bible but still saw no way of it working out. Yet, when Pam told me where the group meets, I realized it was right around the corner from my boyfriend’s house. I already knew God was working in my life, but this was amazing! From that point on my faith has continued to grow stronger and stronger everyday. I was a part of that small group for six months before I ever went back to church, and when I did it was Easter Sunday 2017. Then, after watching the baptisms this Easter, I, in a conversation with God, asked if I should get baptized and I heard Him clearly say, “October.”

For me, the time between this past Easter and this upcoming Baptism Weekend has been spent with Paula Logue and Jeanne Springer. They walked with me through the Gospel: Identity disciple study. We went deep, had so much fun, and came out with a solid foundation of what it means to be “in Christ.” I love the Lord and those ladies, and that’s why, along with Pam McComb, they will be my Side-by-Side sisters.

Jesus Christ has transformed me and continues to do so. I no longer feel obsessed with the way I look or use food to quell my anxiety. I feel effective in my job and am a more safe, patient driver. His grace and mercy, new everyday, leads me to repentance. Knowing what Jesus did for me so that I may have a life worth living, makes me want to be obedient to God’s way. I’m not perfect but sin is no longer the death of me. And with that, I have decided to make it known that Jesus is the Lord of my life. In this I pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.

— Lori Brockway, Baptized September 2018
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