Darlene's Story

 
 

I always knew that Jesus loved me, but I never really understood it.  Fear of rejection was the underlying theme of my life; I was always striving to do and be “enough”.  After being encouraged by a friend, I decided to participate in a Journey program.  I was pleasantly surprised by the testimonies of the leaders facilitating the program; they were the most authentic and heartfelt I had ever heard.  As I experienced the teachings and times of worship, and participated in a small group, I began to think that maybe Jesus had something for ME too.

During one session in particular, in a time of prayer, I had an image of my heart being like a house that I could invite Jesus into - except there was no chance I wanted to take Him in there!  The house I saw was a mess and I was embarrassed.  As I shared this with a leader and we prayed together, I noticed something else: there was a porch with a swing on it at the front of this house that represented my heart.  

Through this image I came to understand Jesus was happy just to sit on the swing with me and spend time with me.  I felt like He REALLY loved me.  I couldn’t quite comprehend it, but it was the most wonderful thing I have ever experienced.  Since that time, we have spent a lot of time together on that porch swing.  It's been very comforting, experiencing His love for me.  He has never pushed me off to go and “do” anything, not even to go and get started on cleaning up my house.

Feeling safe and loved by Jesus has been the catalyst for change in my life.  This fall I felt God inviting me to offer ministry for moms in my church community.  This was a big step after living with the fear of rejection for so long.  I felt Jesus nudge me: “Tell people what I have done for you.  Tell them how I want to love them too.”  I now feel secure enough in the love of Jesus to be able to extend myself to others; worries about being “good enough” have become small in comparison.  God says to me, "My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness."  (2 Corinthians 12:9)

I now understand this to be true.

Darlene