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I was the third child born to a young woman who was living a life of partying and drug addiction, who had neither the ability nor the desire to be a mother. As an infant, my maternal grandparents took me into their home to keep me safe with the hope my biological mother would change her ways and be given the opportunity to raise one of her children. Because of this, she was in and out of my life, but never clean for long or willing to make any necessary changes. My grandparents loved and raised me as their own, and finally made it legal through adoption a few months before my 12th birthday.  My grandparents are faithful members of a small-town Church of Christ and I was brought up in that church since I was in diapers. I was taught that other denominations had the gospel wrong and therefore were living in unrepentant sin and would not be saved. My understanding of the gospel was one of works: Believe Jesus is God's son and came so that there was a way for man to be saved, that in order to be saved one must be baptized, and in order to not lose your salvation one must live a life as righteous as possible and be in a constant state of repentance because each sin separates you from God. I tried hard to be what I considered a good person, but it was disheartening because no matter how hard you try, you'll never get it right. I grew disinterested and bitter. I looked good to those on the outside, but my heart was far away. My junior year of high school is when my life began to change. I was going to a new school and my best friend would also be attending the same school. They had a youth lead morning Bible study there that she wanted to attend and asked me to go to with her, so I did. I was fortunate that there were youth in that group who knew the true gospel and wanted to share and encourage others with the good news of the hope that is in Jesus. For the first time, I was able to be exposed to a different way of thinking and teaching in regard to scripture for an extended period of time. I was encouraged by their hope and confidence that was solely in what Christ had done and not what they could do. I was hungry to listen and expose myself as much as I could. I was recommended pastors such as David Platt, John Piper and Francis Chan. Online I found valuable resources by pastors whose names I hadn’t heard before but whose teaching deeply encouraged me in my journey. I had an aunt who had also been brought up in the same church, who had left after realizing she did not agree with their teaching of salvation who I’d meet with because she could understand more than anyone my confusion, concerns, and backlash that I’d face. She, and others, were praying for me and the Holy Spirit truly was working in my heart to let go of the beliefs that I had accepted as truth and the fear that kept me from questioning them.  I don't have an exact date that I look back on and know it was the moment I was saved, but I can look back at a season and see how God moved powerfully in my life. I know that I am a child of God because my hope is fully in his Son who lived a sinless life but bore the sin of man and endured the full wrath of God, the son who now sits at the Father’s right hand and intercedes on behalf of all who believe on Him. 12/-4/2022