No one is too young to have a deep relationship with God; no one is too young to be changed by His Word. In this article, 14-year-old Faith Avila shares how knowing God and His Word changed her heart and showed her where her identity and purpose truly lie.
I grew up in a Christian family. I would consistently go to church and attend kids church but still questioned my worth. People’s opinions and perceptions of me held more weight for me than God’s Word. My parents would always tell me that I’m different, special, and set apart, but I never fully understood what that meant.
As a young girl seeking to find a sense of belonging in my friends, I would make many efforts in the past to change myself or aspects of my personality. I didn’t want to be different; I wanted to be like everyone else. Pleasing people became really important to me, even though the satisfaction was temporary.
Then God used someone to preach the gospel to me. I went through ONE 2 ONE (a seven-lesson discipleship guide) with that person and finally understood the weight of my sins—and the weight of what God did for me on the cross. I began to know Him more and found a sense of belonging in Him. I also slowly grew in my faith with the help of my family and the church community who guided me in my walk with God. They encouraged me and surrounded me with His love every single day.
Knowing the real message of the gospel did not just give me a deeper understanding of Christ; it also changed me. I became more aware of God’s overflowing love and saw Him in every blessing I received in my life. His word influenced my habits, decisions, and actions and made me realize that I shouldn’t work hard to please other people. I should just fix my eyes on God and seek Him in everything.
Seeking Jesus has made my life easier. Distractions come and get in the way of my relationship with the Lord, but His grace always enables me to stay focused on Him alone. No matter what difficulty I face, I know I should keep running with my eyes fixed on Jesus. He is not just my source of identity and purpose, He is also my source of peace, love, and comfort.
Now, instead of seeking approval, I speak blessings to the people I meet. Even in school, I always find a way to share the gospel and God’s love to my classmates and friends. I pray for opportunities to share with them how God changed my heart because it is always worth sharing. His love is always worth telling people about.
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” (Romans 12:2, NLT)
No matter how young or old we are, the gospel can minister to us. It changes us from the inside out and reminds us that though the world might tell us lies about who and what we should be, our identity and purpose lie in God alone. We have no one to please but Him.