Today, Meghan shares the remarkable story of how Jesus met her at a concert, thoughts about peace during trials, and the wordless prayers God accepts.
[Meghan is in the middle]
Inspiring biblical passage of the moment: “You know what I’m going to say before I say it, Lord. You go before me, and follow me. You place your hand of blessing upon me.” (Psalm 139:4)
Right now, I am really working and focusing on prayer and spending time with God. This year has been a year of intense struggle and trial, and when it comes to prayer, sometimes, I just don’t know what to say.
Sometimes, I really don’t have anything to say. I always turns to this verse when my heart can’t find the words, because even when I don’t really know what to say, God knows what’s inside of my heart and reminds me that there are going to be times that I don’t have to say anything. He already knows.
“[T]here are going to be times that I don’t have to say anything. He already knows.”
Spiritual growth focus at the moment: Trust. Trust. Trust. I think that with all that is going on in the world right now, sometimes, I struggle to understand the circumstances and why these things happened. The same is true in my own life. I’m learning that even though I don’t always understand why things happen the way they do, whether they be in the world or in my own life, that God is still God, He is always faithful, and He has plans for everybody’s life (Jeremiah 29:11).
Profession: Right now, I am in my first year of teaching, and it is amazing! I am an elementary art teacher, teaching grades K-5. It is such a wonderful job, and I just love being able to work with kids! 🙂
A one sentence bio of yourself: A woman relentlessly pursuing Jesus while striving to be a light to others.
When did you first encounter God? I love telling this story. I am 21 years old, and just became a Christian about three years ago, when I first turned 18. I never grew up in a religious home, we never went to church, and although my parents do believe there is a God, they don’t have a relationship with God.
The summer I turned 18, I was struggling with being sick. My doctors thought that there was a possibility that I had the autoimmune disease Lupus, which is very serious. I was terrified and struggling through the experience, when a really good friend of mine dragged me to a Christian concert that was being hosted downtown. I didn’t want to go. I had some idea of God, but with this diagnosis staring me right in the face, I had a hard time believing that God was good. My friend, who is an amazing man of God, knew this and wanted me to come experience God myself. A man came up on stage and started intensely praying, when suddenly he stopped and said God was telling him that there was someone in the audience that was facing a serious illness, and therefore did not want to believe God was good. My friend and I looked at each other, and I stared balling.
The man came down from the stage, placed his hand on my head, and prayed for healing and peace in the name of Jesus– and that’s when I felt this explainable peace just completely wash over my soul. I knew at that moment that God was there, He was in me, and He was healing me. After that night, I decided that no matter what the outcomes was, that I needed to devote my life to someone bigger than me and give my life to Jesus. Thankfully, the tests all came back negative. Jesus really worked in me that night and showed me that He will always take care of me, no matter what. That night is the night I fell in love with Jesus and decided to give my life to Him.
“[B]ut with this diagnosis staring me right in the face, I had a hard time believing that God was good.“
What has helped you grow spiritually in this season? The trials. 2017 has been filled with change and trials that never seem to cease. Even though I don’t like the trial, what I’ve learned through them is to embrace them. I embrace the hardships because I know God is using them to strengthen me and grow me in ways I never could have done without it. Losing my job, losing who I thought was the love of my life and financial hardship– all set me up to see the bigger picture– that God is always faithful to provide, no matter what. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving us for an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” 2 Corinthians 4:17
“God is always faithful to provide, no matter what.”
Just read/currently reading:
Right now, I am very into leadership and am trying to read as many books as I can about it. I’m currently reading Lead Like Jesus
by Ken Blanchard, which encourages you to not only be a great leader, but to lead just as Jesus did. I am also studying and reading through the book of Habakkuk and Titus in the Bible.
Top three essentials: Jesus, family, and Godly friends. If you have those three things, you can do anything.
How did God speak to you recently? I wouldn’t say that God speaks to me, directly. He speaks to me through His actions. Whenever I’m starting to stray away from His will, He always throws something my way to get me back on His path, which I am extremely thankful for. He always reminds me when He does this that He and He alone is in control, not me. That has happened to me a couple times this year, and it has shown me truly how blessed I am to have a God who guides the steps for my life. “Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
Hobby: My favorite hobby is singing/playing piano. It’s so peaceful, and I love bringing glory to God through the two things I love to do most.
Top three practical tips for staying spiritually strong:
I love this question.
1- Pray. You can never hold a relationship with people if you don’t communicate or spend time with them, and it’s the same with God. If you never take the time to spend time with God and His word, you can’t expect to feel Him and be in good relationship with Him. Talk to God about anything and everything. He wants to hear it. Even if you don’t know what to say, just be still and be present. He’s there, He cares, and He loves you so much.
2- Read your Bible. The more you read and the more time you take to understand God’s word, the more intentional you will be about living a godly life. You can learn so much about every aspect of your life just by reading and studying God’s word. You connect yourself to the Father when you read His words.
3- Go to church. I find church to be a much needed spiritual recharge at the end of the week. I love being surrounded by God’s people and worshiping Him with them. I love diving deeper into God’s word to see what ways He will touch me this coming week. I always feel close to God and spiritually renewed after church.
I believe these are essential for having a close relationship with the Father.
Favorite person in scripture: Other than Jesus, my favorite person is David. I love the story of David’s redemption. David and his story always remind me that we all fall short of the glory of God, and we all make mistakes– but thanks to Jesus and what He did on the cross, we can all be made new and in good relationship with the Father. I also love Peter. Even though he denied Jesus three times, he repented and returned to having a loving relationship with the Lord. Both are wonderful men of God and are relatable to our own lives in so many ways.
What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you? I want them to learn that God is love, He is redeemer, and He saves the lost and broken. Anyone who knew me before I turned 18 knew I was living less than a godly life. When people look at me, I want them to see that God can take even the messiest or the broken and restore and save them. God provided me with a way to a better life, and I want people to know that every time they look at me.
“God provided me with a way to a better life…”
Favorite season: Winter! I LOVE the cold and the beauty of snow. I live in Colorado, where is snows all the time, and I would never want to live anywhere else. One of my favorite things in life is to look at the sky at night, when it’s snowing– it has a purple glow to it that is just overwhelmingly peaceful. And of course, it’s the season of Christmas!
Favorite holiday: Such a cliche, but obviously Christmas! There is something so beautiful about the way I see people come together at the holidays. I know it’s not a beautiful holiday for a lot of people, so I try to do most of my volunteering around this time to bring joy to those who feel no joy at Christmas. I love celebrating the birth or our wonderful Savior with the people who mean most to me.
A special tradition you and your family engage in or keep: My dad is a HUGE Charlie Brown fan. So every time a holiday comes, we watch the Charlie Brown special associated with that holiday. Every year, every time. We never miss it!
Question you will ask when you get to heaven: I don’t think that I have a lot of questions that I will ask. I think I will be too busy hugging Jesus and being overfilled with joy that I won’t even think to ask a question.
Thing you want to raise awareness about: Mental health. Mental health is such a huge problem in America and all over the world, and I think that it’s something that’s not talked about a lot. I feel very strongly about mental health and the importance of having a healthy mind. It’s just as important as having a healthy body. I want people who are suffering from a mental health problem to be given the proper care they need to get better.
What do you usually do before 9 a.m.? I usually am awake at about 6 to get ready for work. I spend some time drinking coffee and reading my Bible, right when I wake up. I shower and get ready, get to work, and I am already about an hour into the school day by the time 9 a.m. comes.
What is on your nightstand?
A little basket full of random junk, a water bottle and some bottles of lotion.
For more Meghan O.:
Until next time, keep witnessing!