Today, Amy, an apologist in training, shares with us thoughts on acquiring the fruit of the Spirit, unlearning what we are taught to then embrace Truth, a powerful definition of free will and the importance of evangelism (and some embarrassing statistics for Christians). There are some great book recommendations, below!
Inspiring biblical passage of the moment: “If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny who He is.” (2 Timothy 2:13)
Spiritual growth focus at the moment: In my current season, I truly desire to grow immensely in the fruits of the Spirit. It has been a huge struggle, not going to sugar coat it. I tend to get upset with people easily, and therein not show them kindness or love, but it isn’t impossible to execute especially because Jehovah is guiding me.
“It has been a huge struggle, not going to sugar coat it.”
Profession: Currently, studying online at Liberty University, trying to obtain my bachelor’s in Theology & Apologetics, further along the road, I pray I get the chance to study culinary.
A one sentence bio of yourself: I exist to serve Abba and those around me.
When did you first encounter God? I grew up a church kid, a very typical Pentecostal story. *laughs* It was only until I was 17, when I stopped serving God and stopped attending church, that I realized that it wasn’t just about attending a building but actually BEING the church (Jesus’ bride) and being wholeheartedly transformed by God. I reconciled with God at age 19, but in the two years that I wasn’t serving Him, He still tugged and pulled at my heart letting me know that the world wasn’t my home and that I needed to come back but to unlearn everything I was taught as a kid and to be reformed by the Truth. It has been a tough, confusing, uncomfortable 3-4 years, but I would not go back to the world even if they paid me. My parents are now pastors, we are going on our 2nd year anniversary in March, and I’m just in awe of what God has been doing through us
“I realized that it wasn’t just about attending a building but actually BEING the church”
What has helped you grow spiritually in this season? Definitely, self-discipline and daily death of the flesh. We have to take initiative of carrying our crosses and dying of our flesh desires ON A DAILY. We sin every day, but we have a choice: do we stick with the sin and continue defiling God, or do we rebuke the enemy and choose joy, mercy, grace, unrelenting love? We have a choice, thats what free will is.
“We sin every day, but we have a choice: do we stick with the sin and continue defiling God, or do we rebuke the enemy and choose joy, mercy, grace, unrelenting love? We have a choice, that’s what free will is.”
Just read/currently reading (and what has it taught you?): Ok, so being a bibliophile is difficult when you have a full stack of books that you haven’t read yet but have a whole list of other books that you want to purchase. *laughs* I for one have been stuck on 3 books recently: The Holiness of God by R.C. Sproul, Not A Fan by Kyle Idleman and How’s Your Soul? By Judah Smith. I haven’t finished them because I have been reading them all simultaneously. I can sense judgment all the way from here.
Top three essentials: So I’m going to take this as 3 every day life essentials and I’m going with 1. water bottle, PLEASE STAY HYDRATED, 2. lip balm (preferably EOS lip balm) & 3. planner/calendar, I got mine from Walmart.
How did God speak to you recently? God has been speaking to me from the book of prophet Jonah in the Bible since October 2017, and still has been ministering to me through it today.
God always comes through for us even when we fail Him on a daily. Jonah didn’t want to go to Nineveh but running away from his calling did not get him anywhere because God caught up to him anyways. Even while Jonah complained to God about why he didn’t initially want to go to Nineveh, as he watched over Nineveh, God provided shade for his discomfort (Jonah 4:6). Now, why would God provide anything to a selfish, ungrateful, negative-filled individual? Because this ain’t about us, this is about Him and what needs to get done in order for His word to be broadcasted to every ear that hasn’t heard the Good News.
The time is quickly approaching in which Christ will come for His faithful remnant; are we using the time He gave us to spread His word? I recently also learned that only 3% [of] Christians (1/3 of 7 billion people are Christian) evangelize, that’s not a lot, and it’s incredibly embarrassing to know that we are wasting time not doing what God called us to do.
“I recently also learned that only 3% [of] Christians (1/3 of 7 billion people are Christian) evangelize, that’s not a lot, and it’s incredibly embarrassing to know that we are wasting time not doing what God called us to do.”
Hobby: Reading is obviously a hobby, if I’m not at church or at work, but I’ve also been into learning new languages.
Top three practical tips for staying spiritually strong: Meditating on the word every single day (if you don’t have a physical Bible, at times I use the Holy Bible, SheReadsTruth & the Logos Bible app to help translate Hebrew to English), praying without ceasing/seeking God, and fasting.
Favorite person in scripture? Paul has always been my favorite because of how hard core he is about turning away from our sins and his life story has always been an impactful one, but also John because he got to be so up close and personal to love Himself and then wrote about it in 3 epistles.
What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you? I want them to learn that God is slow to become angry, yet He is just and holy before He is love, that He is a joyful God, but He also gets sad when we defile Him.
That He would never pressure nor force us into following Jesus and that He would go to the ends of the earth to showcase His love for us. I just want them to learn what Cory Asbury once said, “His love bankrupted heaven for you. His love doesn’t consider Him first. His love isn’t selfish or self-serving. He doesn’t wonder what He’ll gain or lose by putting Himself out there. He simply gives Himself away on the off-chance that one of us might look back at Him and offer ourselves in return.”
“He is a joyful God, but He also gets sad when we defile Him.”
Favorite season? Definitely late Summer, when it turns into Autumn.
A dream you have? To meet Jesus Christ, face to face.
A special tradition you and your family engage in or keep: Every year in June and August we attend the Puerto Rican parade in both Chicago and where we currently reside, Milwaukee, WI.
Question you will ask when you get to heaven? I believe I’ll be tremendously in awe that I won’t have any questions because God truly is the answer.
Thing you want to raise awareness about: Definitely, about the lack of evangelism and mental illness.
What do you usually do before 9 a.m.? I’m most likely either sleeping, not gonna lie, or if I’m awake because I’m the opening manager that certain day, I’ll be up praying before getting ready for work.
What is on your nightstand? My Bible and journal at times, most times just my phone & some lip balm.
Define Christianity in a sentence: Christianity is just the religion, in Christ we have a relationship. Without Christ, there is no sanity.
“Without Christ, there is no sanity.”
For more Amy:
Until next time, keep witnessing!