I am 23, recently engaged and getting married this March. I graduated from college last year, and I am working as a case manager with kids ages 5-18 at a local non-profit.

I grew up in a few different churches. I started out in a Pentecostal church with my grandma, and it was extremely religious, with lots of “get to heaven with your behavior plan” kinds of things. I got “saved” at 13 in a traditional Baptist church. During high school, I only stayed involved because of the guilt that others made me feel by saying that I had to attend church. I served on the dance/worship team on Sunday mornings, often after a long night of drinking on Saturday night. When I started college I didn’t really want anything to do with the church.

I have been through Story-Formed Life two times, and each time the Lord has shown me so much about his love and trusting Him. The biggest way I have been impacted is that I am starting to truly understand the cross. Before SFL, I didn’t understand the immense amount of grace that He gave us through the cross. I felt emotionally disconnected from it, and quite honestly my actions revealed that. I acted as if I were entitled to have Jesus die for my sins and save me. Through SFL, I was confronted with just how much I was fallen and broken. I started believing that there was a debt to be paid, and that the consequence of my sin was truly death. I deserved that death. Once I believed that, the Lord’s grace became something new. I no longer felt entitled to it, but rather I was humbled by the fact that a God like He is would even think to give us that much mercy and pay the debt for His people. It opened me up to receive this gift of grace for what it is rather than what I made it to be. I’m still growing in all of this, of course, but I’m thankful for the way the Lord has shown me and will continue to show me His love.