My Journey to Freedom [Book One] from abuse, codependency, faulty beliefs about Christianity, to a personal encounter with the Unconditional Love of God by Susan Hopkins
This book is dedicated to women. Hear these loving words from your heavenly Father: ‘You have loved ME well; you have loved OTHERS well, but you have not yet loved YOU the way that I love you.' “And I will be a Father to you, and you will be My sons and daughters,” says the Lord Almighty. 2 Cor 6:18 (AMP)
Ten years after Susan walked down the aisle of a church and gave her life to God in the service of others, she renounced Christianity as she knew it. She just couldn't try and fail one more time. She was tired of never being ‘good enough'; tired of trying hard to be the ‘perfect' daughter, mother, wife; and she tried even harder to be a ‘good' Christian. She couldn’t seem to meet anyone’s expectations, let alone her own.
It was impossible to know that an hour later she would have a personal encounter with the unconditional love of God that would change her life forever. “I am your heavenly Father,” He said. “You are My child. I formed you in your mother’s womb. I gave you your name, your gifts, your talents and your personality. All I have ever wanted you to be is ‘yourself'. I have a purpose and plan for your life that can only be accomplished if you choose to be the person I created you to be. If not, you will miss your destiny entirely. I will place a burning desire in your heart to be My disciple, and I will give you the power to do whatever I ask you to do. I love you more than any earthly Father ever could.”
Letting go of her preconceived ideas about Christianity was not the end but rather a brand new beginning. Clearly, Christianity is not a religion, it’s a relationship. It’s not about trying harder to be ‘good enough', it’s about trusting more. Christianity as God intended is a life of rest, abiding in Christ and He in us through the power of the Holy Spirit; a life of abundance where we never have to worry because He provides everything we could ever need or want. She was relieved because all she had to do was be ‘herself'.
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Where does one begin? I’m a senior citizen now with time to reflect upon my earthly life fraught with failures and mistakes and of course inevitable successes and triumphs. Would I have done anything differently? Yes. And YOU? Would you have made different life choices? When time permits, please take time to read the words of Paul in Philippians Chapter 3 in the Bible because his words echo my own. I spent so many years of my life trying to obey every rule and regulation in our religious system only to fail time and time again to meet the expectations of church, family, friends, society and sadly even my own.
Yet, like Paul, something good has come from all of my mistakes in that I have learned to put my trust and hope in Christ alone. Truthfully, true Christianity was never about being ‘good enough' or doing all the ‘right' things. Christianity as God intended is a life of rest, abiding in Christ and He in us through the power of the Holy Spirit; a life of abundance where we never have to worry because He provides everything we could ever need or want. “All I want you to be is yourself,” my heavenly Father said, “or you could miss your destiny.”
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m perfect or that I don’t make mistakes, but I strive to be the best “ME” I can be while seeking to do God’s will on this earth. I prayerfully considered what to share as a synopsis of my life. I guess my bio is just not about ‘me' anymore because as Paul says so eloquently in Galatians 2: 19-20 (TLB) “I have been crucified with Christ: and I myself no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the real life I now have within this body is a result of my trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
I have so much to share with you! So fasten your spiritual seatbelt, my friend, it’s going to be an amazing journey as we take the hand of God and walk with Him, one step at a time, one day at a time, while unlocking the secrets of His heart. If you want to know more about me and the programs and services I offer, feel free to visit my website: IF I KNEW THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW, or send an email to email@example.com
The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.