My Story...

Hi. My name is Stephanie Burton and I have been a Christian most of my life.

For many years I’ve gotten away fairly easily when people would ask me how I became a Christian. “I grew up in a Christian family.” I’d say, and that would be the end of my testimony. Recently I’ve been given the opportunity to hear so many other testimonies from new friends, and they are all so different than mine. I get caught thinking “Oh man, I wish I had that kind of ‘ah ha’ moment.” But the truth is, I never did.

I was at an outreach for kids when I was about 8 or 9 years old. (I wish I could remember the exact year.) There was a guy doing a puppet show for us, he did his show and then at the end talked about Jesus. He gave the call for kids to come down front to invite Jesus into our hearts, and I got up from my seat and walked to the front. Not emotional, not in a hurry. (It may have been the fact that so many other kids were going and I didn’t want to be left out.) I got up front, had a dear lady ask me questions to fill out a card, and then she prayed with me.

That was it. No flash of lightning, no drastic change in my behavior (that I remember, maybe my parents have a different story!), sudden speaking in tongues, or flailing about on the floor. Even though I don’t remember anything like that happening to me, I don’t remember a time in my life not having the covering and conviction from the Holy Spirit.

Growing up with Parents who were Christians, attending a church that put a lot of focus on the children and youth ministries, and surrounding myself with Christian friends, all led to a steady walk with the Lord. (Psalm 1:1-3 says: 1 Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with mockers. 2 But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. 3 They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do.)

My life from that point continued to be smooth and trouble free. God blessed me by showing me some of my spiritual gifts at an early age. I eagerly wanted to help people, to give them a listening ear and a soft response. With God’s help I was able to be there for my best friend whose parents were going through a divorce. I was the one called on to help in the nursery for my church’s membership class. I was on the leadership team for most of my years in youth group. I was a counselor at a kid’s camp for 2 years and I worked in Christian establishments throughout my high school career.

During those years, I got a craving for the Bible that I hadn’t had before, and the Joy and excitement I got from reading it permeated my whole life. I had people at church and school asking me why I was happy all the time, I got to tell them it wasn’t ‘happiness’ but rather Joy from God. (1st Peter 1:8-9 says “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”)

Some 20 years later, I can look back on my life and see the Lord doing great works in my life, and the lives of my family. There is no doubt in my mind that all those years ago, he plucked me out of the world to be part of His bride. I can only pray that I’m doing my part to help the church look beautiful to Christ on that glorious day of His return.

Comments

I feel the same way about my

I feel the same way about my childhood...I am so glad to have God in my life and want nothing more than to be able to come closer to him and have Collin feel his love and warmth. Thank you for this! I needed this.

Sara