Katy, 18, Alberta, Canada
Growing up, everyone always knew me as a Christian, but I was far from one. I only started going to church to get out of the house. I didn’t really believe, but I loved my church friends, so I did the whole youth group/summer camp thing. So, as I got older, I quickly fell into sin.
When I reached age 18, the Canadian legal drinking age, I started partying like crazy. I went to the bar every single weekend. Sometimes three times a week, sometimes five. I quickly became preoccupied with getting validation from boys. My main concern each night was whether I was sexy enough. If I didn’t find a boy to make out with that night, then that night was a bad night.
As I got older, it became clear that making out wasn’t enough — sex was the expectation. I eventually gave into the pressure and lost my virginity to a guy I met at a bar. After, I thought, “Well, I lost it, so I might as well keep it up.” I kept doing what I was doing, until I stumbled upon a “Christian” guy and decided to commit to him. Like me, his faith identity was just a label. We were two “believers” who lived in total sin — and never talked about God.
Our relationship was doomed from the start. He didn’t like my family and hated my friends. On top of that, the sex we were having pulled me even further from the faith. The enemy used my sin to shame and condemn me; I was convinced that no one in the church would want anything to do with me.
Then, a few months ago, I saw this Ted Talk video about lukewarm Christians. The talk centered around the Lord’s words in Revelation 3:16: “So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.” The weight of my situation hit me like a ton of bricks: I was a lukewarm Christian! For years, I’d said I was following Christ, but I was going my own way. Convicted, I texted my boyfriend “We had to stop having sex.” In return, he basically said “If you’re not going to give me sex, I don’t want you.” By that point, my sense of self worth was already so twisted, but those words shattered me. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know anything, but I did know God. So, I turned to him.
I was like, “God, I’m not even sure if you’re real, but I’m broken.” I spent that whole night bawling, praying to a God I didn’t totally believe in. In the end, I gave Him an ultimatum — as bad as that sounds. I was like, “I’m giving you two weeks. I will live out my faith to the fullest. I will pray and read my Bible every day. If nothing has changed by the end of the second week, I’m going back to my old life.” The next morning, everything had shifted.
Everything that had been holding me down — my body image, my need for validation, my shame — all of it was gone. Every chain had been broken. It’s hard to explain…I just know it was a miracle. I felt free. I felt loved. I felt the presence of God. My mind was just absolutely blown. I started chasing God down after that.
As I grew in my knowledge of God and His word, my desires began shifting. I began cutting off the people who just wanted me for my body. My interest in drunkenness and sex faded out. By God’s grace, I finally began to see those desires for what they were: a desperate search for love. I hadn’t accepted the love that God was offering — the love that every person craves — so I searched for it elsewhere. But at the end of the day, nothing but Christ could satisfy me.
Temptations still arise, but I now know both my worth and who God has called me to be. Now, when I’m tempted, I just pray. The Lord has also taught me to guard my mind. Just as Scripture says, “For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life” (Galatians 6:8). If I fill my mind with lustful movies and music, I will walk in lust. And I don’t want this. I want to walk in the Spirit — not because I’m afraid of hell, but because I’m in awe of the Lord. Just as we hate to disappoint the people we love, if we love the Lord, we won’t want to break His heart.
“Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.” – 2 Corinthians 7:10