Hey everyone!  I’ve been inspired to start a blog because of all the awesome people I’ve met here in Charleston… and to stay in touch with all my Mainers that I miss so much! This first one is kind of long… sorry about that.  I’ll keep them shorter next time!

I just want to say how AMAZING Charleston is! This place is truly filled with the Holy Spirit and I feel so blessed that the Lord brought me here.  A lot of people back home never really knew the true reason of why I moved, and honestly I don’t think I knew to the full extent at that time either.

When I made my decision to move to Charleston a lot of people were SHOCKED to say the least! I only visited Charleston once, for my cousins wedding… but saw what an amazing Christian community this was. So the day I made my decision, I sent a text message to my mom telling her I was moving, gave my 2-week notice to my job that day… and 2 weeks later here I am in Charleston.  I think my friends and family were caught just a little off-guard!

Yesterday, I was walking on Isle of Palms beach thinking how different my life would be if I didn’t move here. I would be graduating this May at U-Maine Farmington and would be a Health Teacher.  Now, I’m junior status at Charleston Southern as a Religion major.  How did this happen?  There’s only one answer- God.  In Maine I was so busy planning my life, and didn’t once stop to question what God’s plan for me really was.  Don’t get me wrong, I still have absolutely NO idea what his plan for me is… but at least now I am trying to release the control I thought I once had of my life and know that I can’t do it on my own.

I know everyone from back home thinks I am some crazy God-loving cult member now, but what everyone needs to know is that, I did not just move somewhere new and became a totally different person. In fact, I feel like I was always trying to be someone else for so long and now for the first time I am learning who I really am… The person that God made me to be. Not what I think I need to be.

All my life I’ve felt this tugging at my heart.  Didn’t know what it was, or what was missing.  I didn’t grow up in a Christian family; in fact it was the opposite.  My father had a strong hatred towards the Church because of having Catholicism shoved down his throat all his life. Even throughout the negativity of Christianity, I still believed in God. I had no idea who he really was, or about Jesus. Just a strong gut feeling that he was the way.  So I went to Church on my own and thought that it would be ok just to believe and be a good person. I made up my own rules and fit God into my life where I could still live the way I wanted to live.

I’m attending the Alpha series through my church and Todd, a speaker was telling a story of how he used to skim through the bible and look for things that pertained to his life.  He was trying to fit God’s word where he wanted it to fit, instead of reading the bible and trying to fit his life to Gods.  This was very much like my idea of what being a Christian was.  Skim through the bible, pick out a couple verses that made me feel better about the way I lived my life, and ignore the rest.

I thought that being a Christian involved a set of rules and boring people- Boy, was I wrong!  I really longed for the knowledge and now God not only opened the doors for me to grow in my faith through great people, he also put me in school to learn more about his word.  It’s so amazing how much my life has drastically changed over the past 5 months.  I’m not going to sit here and tell everyone that my life is now easier, because of being a Christian. (Josh would just completely laugh in my face if he read that!!)  My life in not easier, in fact it’s harder.  It’s hard for me to realize I’m not in control, to stop worrying and having anxiety, that I don’t know where my life is going and that I can’t do it on my own… Those realizations are freaking hard.  But, what I can say is even though my life is harder and my weaknesses are continuously thrown in my face… I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am no longer living for Friday night at Applebee’s… or the OG (I love my soup, salad and breadsticks!!!) Life is so much more than that.  And trust me… I’m still the same, Chrissy. I still am a wine-o, a bad (I mean horrible) driver, have the most obnoxious sense of humor… and so on.  But, what has changed is that my life has a purpose.  Knowing that there is so much more to life, than trying to get through the week and make it to Friday for happy hour.  Christianity is not about how to be a better person, how to make a marriage stronger, doing good deeds, or who has the most money to give away. It’s about letting go, realizing no matter how hard you try you will never be in charge.

So now, people are asking… What are you going to do with a Religion degree? The answer is, I don’t know, and now I realize that is ok.  All I know is that God will continue to walk with me when times are good and carry me when times are bad.  I guess I can’t go wrong!