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  • Writer's pictureEmily Brubaker

Testimony

Updated: Feb 12

Everyone has a story. As a follower of Christ, my life has been fully and completely redeemed by the grace of God. By sharing my testimony, I hope readers will know my heart better and be able to identify with pieces of my life.


Introduction


As stated in my "Who I Am" article, I was born and raised in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. I graduated from Elizabethtown Area High School in 2016 before attending Liberty University. While I will go into slightly more detail later on, I only remained at Liberty for one semester before transferring to Messiah College, which is located in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. While in college, I played club field hockey and was involved with Messiah's sports ministry program called AROMA. In 2020, I graduated from Messiah with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree. Then, I returned to Liberty to pursue my graduate studies. In 2022, I completed my Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree. Before finishing graduate school, I worked for Elizabethtown High School as an assistant varsity softball coach and an assistant to the athletic director. I also had experience working for Lancaster County's Fellowship of Christian Athletes organization as well as a foster care agency called the Bair Foundation. Presently, I work as a Research Coordinator for Liberty University.


Before the Surrender


My life before Christ can best be described as years of aimless wandering. I used to think I could figure everything out on my own, and I treated God as an amenity rather than a necessity. Most of my 26 years have been marred by sinful acts like giving in to sexual temptation, anger, greed, selfishness, pride, and comparison. Until the last few years, I had spent the entirety of my life believing I could have both God and the pleasures of the world. I professed to be a Christian yet my actions and my words said otherwise. Over the last three years, however, the Lord has convicted me and made me realize I'm either fully His or fully the world's. In February of 2022, I knew I wanted to be fully His, so I decided to get baptized.


Coming to Christ

The summer after I graduated from high school, a close friend and teammate of mine committed suicide. She was only 16 years old. Needless to say, the tragic events of the summer as well as the transition to college were challenging, but I started school at Liberty University in the fall and began diving deeper into my faith. After just one semester, however, I found myself leaving Liberty and transferring to Messiah. During my first year and a half at Messiah, my relationship with God fluctuated significantly. I even reached a point, during my sophomore year, where I questioned whether God was real, and if He truly loved me. I had such a warped view of the Lord that I let my circumstances dictate my belief in Him. Fortunately, I found a strong biblical community in my junior year and started to regain my faith. There were a lot of moments during that time when I was reminded of how much I needed Jesus in my life, but none were more impactful than the sports ministry trip I took to Macha, Zambia with fellow Messiah student-athletes. I returned home with a renewed mind and a transformed heart. While it has been five years since the trip, I fell in love with Jesus all over again in Africa. Ironically, Africa was a place I said I would never go. Little did I know, God intended to send me all along.


After the Surrender

Beginning in the fall of 2021, the Lord began working on my heart and preparing me to fully and completely surrender to Him. There were moments in the past when I contemplated getting baptized, but there was always a voice in my head telling me, "Not yet." You could also call it Holy Spirit discernment. Now, I realize it was because there was still a lot of work God needed to do in my life before I was truly ready to submit to Him. In November of 2021, a pastor at my former church concluded the series we were studying with a powerful message in which he talked about how many of us will face a time when God invites us into something we don't feel ready for. In the weeks leading up to this sermon, the idea of getting baptized kept coming into my mind, and it was during his message I heard the Lord whispering to me, "It's time." That night, I went home and registered for baptism.


Where Christ Has Brought Me

Now, I no longer attend the church in which I was baptized; however, I found a church in the Lancaster area that is completely submitted to the Word of God. Over the past couple of years, I have realized just how important it is for a church to be firmly grounded in Scripture and to teach theology and doctrine that aligns with it. The young adult group I attend has given me a biblical community I have not experienced before. I am surrounded by young men and women who have deep knowledge of the Bible and, like myself, desire to know the Lord more intimately. They also seek to live out their faith and not just talk about doing so. While I have significantly grown in my faith over the last three years, I do not profess to know everything about the Word or God, himself. I am still a sinner who will not be made perfect until she enters the kingdom of Heaven. As with any follower of Christ, I am still undergoing sanctification; however, my encouragement, for anyone reading this, is to keep going and dive deeper. Ask the hard questions. God isn't afraid of your thoughts. He already knows them. Open the Bible. Read it and watch how the Holy Spirit transforms your heart, mind, and soul.


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