I am writing to you as a fellow woman who has also grown up in church. From nine months before I was born, to writing to you today, I was in a church pew every Sunday morning, and in a classroom every Wednesday evening. My mom, dad, sister, and I sat together as a family each week. I don’t say this to boast of myself in any way, but to describe my upbringing. Looking back as a now 26-year-old, growing up I felt like a very typical child with a very typical family. I naively believed that most children were raised very similarly to me, with a mom and dad who loved them and desired to raise them to the very best of their ability.
Today, I am sitting here and writing you from the perspective of someone who has lived so much more life, and had vast experiences of different people, demographics, and walks of life than that young Christian girl raised in church. What an unfathomable gift that the Lord chose to have me raised in a Christian home to a middle class, American family.
I didn’t have to search the world to find my Savior. He found me because He placed me under the supervision of my parents who were also raised from generations of Christians.
Not all children are born to parents who love them and want the best for them. In fact, MANY children are born to parents that don’t even care about them. My heart is broken, and my eyes are open to this heartbreaking reality. Up until this very point in my life I can say that I have completely taken for granted what it means to be raised in a Christian home. I remember sitting in youth conferences as a teenager hearing other Christians speak of the life-altering change of when they became a Christian. How they had this unconventional life of darkness before giving their life to the Lord, and I would think I was less of a Christian because of my lack of a 180-degree turnaround. Today, I am sitting here and writing to you declaring that this gift of being raised in church is exactly that: a gift. Because of this, our Christian roots grow deep and spread wide, securely planting our lives in the living soil of Jesus Christ.
Now sisters, what do we do with this? Boast in the riches and glory of our privilege? Absolutely not. We use this gift of our long-term relationship with our Father to pour out and sow seeds with girls and women who are at the beginning steps of their journey with the Lord. We love, we speak words of life and encouragement, we show hospitality, all for the sake of the gospel. One day, these women who are younger in their new life with Jesus will be the ones whose roots have deepened and spread. One day, we will pass the discipleship baton and see what the Lord will do in the lives of those whose hearts we never would have known would be captured by Him.