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July 10, 2004 – a day that forever changed my life. My spiritual birthday.
I remember that evening like it was yesterday. It was a Saturday night, and Stephen had left for our men’s prayer meeting at our church. I asked him not to be late, since it was not uncommon for him to be home later than 9:30 or even 10.
After I put Samuel (then a baby) in his crib, I sat down to read. I had been miserable lately, struggling with something. If I’d been honest with myself, I would’ve known what the problem was. . .but it took me a long time to figure out what that problem really was. Eventually I became frustrated with the book. Even the fictional characters in the book had joy in their lives.
Two months earlier I had become a first time mommy. Despite loving motherhood, I was absolutely miserable. I never would have admitted it to anyone, but I was. I couldn’t understand why I was still so empty when I had everything I had ever wanted.
Finally I’d had enough and threw the book across the room. I couldn’t read any more about someone else’s joy when I had none.
So I sat there. It was dark and it was storming outside. Stephen wasn’t home yet, and it was getting close to 10 pm. I started to worry that something had happened. My biggest fear was that the Rapture had happened and that my husband was gone. Stephen had just gotten saved a few months ago, and the changes in his life were unbelievable. I was so scared that Christ had returned for my husband and son and that I’d been left behind. I didn’t even have the courage to get up and check Samuel’s crib to see if he was still there. I was absolutely terrified.
Then the door opened and Stephen walked into the house. I pounced on him. “I have got to talk to you NOW.”
He took me to our bedroom and sat down with his Bible. He started reading me verses about accepting Christ, but I just kept thinking, “I’m already saved! I don’t need this!”
That’s when the Holy Spirit spoke loud and clear in my heart. “Melody, you’re lost.” It was the first time in my life that I ever remember realizing that I was dying and on my way to a devil’s Hell. What a realization.
Stephen knelt with me beside our bed and prayed with me. I just sobbed. I will never forget that feeling of relief as if a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I had finally asked the Lord to become my personal Savior, after years of pretending and convincing myself that I already was saved. When I opened my eyes after praying, I happened to notice the clock. 11:11 pm. Even though it was late, we called our pastor to tell him my news.
It was strange and a little scary going to church the next day. I’d been so involved in religion – living such a hypocritical lie – that it was hard to admit that the church pianist and Sunday School teacher had just gotten saved. But you know what? It was worth it.
I was baptized less than a month later, on my 25th birthday. What joy I had to be able to proclaim to the world that I too was a follower of Christ!
So today, 5 years later, I am humbled as I look back. Amazed that God would care to save a hypocrite like me. Amazed at what God has done in our lives. Humbled that God would love me so much to send His Son to die – for me.