Ps Carly Lewis
C3 Cares Pastor and Location Pastor of C3 Merrylands
If you have ever felt like you stuffed up so greatly that you passed the point of no return, we probably could have thrown a rockin’ pity-party together in the late 90’s.
I had not only journeyed off the narrow path, I had gone head first, slip-sliding in the direction of the ‘anything goes highway.’ I felt like a major failure – failed marriage, newly single mother and forced into a job I hated to pay the bills. I’d had my house, my money and my peace stolen from me, all by the ripe old age of 25. I felt like life was just not worth the effort. I escaped the disappointment by binge-drinking and party drugs, but I felt used and joyless. I had reached a point where I had nothing left.
I remember one weekend, while my young kids were at their dad’s, I was getting ready to go out and had popped a pill. My mum invited me to Saturday night church and, because the pill had left me feeling rather high and happy, for once my answer was “yes”. After bouncing along to the music, I heard the voice of God speak straight into my ear in a loud, fatherly and serious tone, “What are you doing in my house like this?” It was the first time in a long time that I acknowledged that God was real and that He was paying attention to me.
In a later conversation with my mother, I came to a realisation. I had spent the last decade ignoring God. I knew that if I died, the place I would go wouldn’t be heaven. This was the wake-up call I needed. I repented a week later in Church and handed my life firmly over to Jesus. I decided that if I was going to do this Christian life then I would be all-in. I had tried life the other way and it had no value.
Jesus is a great redeemer and as His grace began restoring my broken spirit, I was awakened to His heart for those around me. I realised where they were headed, too. So many people walk around with blinders over their eyes to Jesus Christ and His redemptive power. I did for nearly a decade.
A burden built within me for people who had also experienced the enemy coming hard at them, but whom perhaps did not have Christian mothers praying for them. What about those people? What about the people that have never heard there is hope in Christ? Those who would never ordinarily walk into a Church service?
My heart began breaking for the lost. I had found the answer to the human condition and was compelled to share it.