A Second Chance: Christy’s Story

It has been so encouraging to learn more about our interns and listen in as they share their stories of God’s grace. 1 Peter 3:15 says:

but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.

I think this is just what we are practicing here in these blogs about God’s faithfulness in the lives of our intern servants. What a great way to  give an account of the hope that is in us!

Today, I would like to introduce you to Christy. Christy is an RN who came to join our intern team in July, 2014 from Marion, Indiana. She attended Faith Church’s annual Biblical Counseling Training Conference in 2011 and was about to take a tour of Vision of Hope. She thought it would be an awesome ministry to be a part of, but God led her elsewhere. She attended Word of Life Bible Institute where she learned about the internship opportunity, and later applied to join our team! She is looking forward to developing her ability to point people to Scripture in a gracious, yet constructive way, helping them identify heart idols, and use Truth to truly change. It is her plan to work on her Biblical Counseling certification while she’s here so she can use it wherever God leads her.

Please be encouraged with me as we read this story of God’s forgiving love:

“I have been extremely blessed to grow up in a Christian home with godly parents who have always made Bible study, church attendance, and a personal relationship with the Lord a priority. When I was 4 years old, I prayed a little prayer asking Jesus to forgive my sins and come into my heart. I believed I was saved, but my life didn’t really change and reflect that of Christ’s; there was no Fruit of the Spirit. I continued to be hypocritical and self-righteous, pursing things that made me look and feel good. I was still a liar, extremely prideful, and I don’t honestly think I believed I really needed a Savior; I thought I was a pretty good kid without God’s help.

Over the next several years, I became more and more prideful, and blind to my sin. I became involved in some things that really hurt me, and my family. When I was 13, God started to work on me, beginning to convict me of my sin and show me how I was so much worse than I thought I was. Finally, in July of 2004 – ten years ago this year – God fully opened my eyes. I can remember someone reading the verse “And you may be sure your sin will find you out” (Numb. 32:23). Shortly afterword, I told my parents of my sin, and by that time, I know I was truly relying on faith in Christ alone for salvation, because I understood that there was absolutely no way I could ever get to Heaven on my own. The next day, my Pastor met with me and shared the story of the woman caught in adultery from John 8, and I fully felt the weight of my sins, and was overwhelmed at how God did not condemn me, but was willing to forgive and give me a second chance. The Lord humbled my heart, showing me my wickedness and how desperately I needed Him. I realized I had not been saved at all when I was younger, because I truly thought I could get to Heaven without God.

Shortly after this, I received Biblical counseling, which was rather more like discipleship, from my pastor and my father. I grew so much during that time, which is why I am such a strong advocate for Biblical counseling; I have seen how using Scripture to deal with heart issues truly works.

As an RN, I’ve come across many hurting people who have physical symptoms that stem from heart issues. I realize I do not know how to help these people deal with many of these problems, but I know from personal experience the value of Biblical counseling and teaching individuals to find real help, hope, and life change through Christ and His Word.

God changed my heart and opened my eyes.  Since then, I have grown in humility, or at least I am recognizing my pride and striving to deal with it, with Christ’s help. I know I won’t ever be perfect; every day is a constant battle against the flesh. Despite this, I know God is on my side helping me to overcome through His grace. Before I was saved, I seldom read my Bible. However, I now find great joy in spending time in God’s Word and in prayer daily. I am working to memorize more Scripture because I can now see how imperative it is not only for ministry, but also for speaking Truth into my daily life and decisions. I am anxious to know my God better through studying His Word, and am striving to apply it in real life situations. I want to learn how to better help others, too, in a very practical way by use of Scripture. My future plans are pretty vague at this point, but I have interests in some sort of ministry involving discipling troubled women or youth, possibly working with sex trafficking victims overseas.”

Thank you so much for sharing, Christy! What a great way to give an account of the hope that is in you! Stay tuned for more encouraging stories of God’s forgiveness and grace!

Bethany Dunn
Bethany heard about Vision of Hope while attending Word of Life Bible Institute in Florida. When she began praying about what God wanted her to do after graduating, He kept bringing Vision of Hope to her mind. Knowing that there was an internship available, Bethany applied, was accepted, and began her internship with VOH in July, 2012. Since then she has been amazed at the opportunities God has given her to learn more about His Word and how it applies to everyday life. Bethany now serves on staff at Vision of Hope.