When I grew up, I knew there was a God, and that we were created by something, for something. My family went to church on Sundays and often had lunch with family friends or relatives after the service.
Getting into my teenage years I felt like I wasn’t getting enough out of my life: almost as if I wasn’t living my life to the fullest. So I started looking for things to do and ways to fill that void. I began to experiment with drugs and alcohol, which seemed to fill that void. But after a while I was left feeling even more empty, lost, hopeless and alone.
After meeting my beautiful wife and oldest son, I began to smarten up and sober up, but I still struggled with that feeling of being unfulfilled. I had seen people with great success in their careers: it seemed that they had so much. I saw they had the money, houses, and they had the finical freedom to go on vacations, buy new toys, cars motorcycles etc. But what I desired and loved most about their lives was that they belonged. They belonged at their job, with their co-workers, and they were respect by those people. At that point I thought that if I could make more money then I, too, would be happy.
So my family packed up and moved to an area where I could earn more. In a single year we moved three times. I made more money, but at the cost of spending more and more time away from my family. At the end of that year, I was no better off financially or emotionally.
I remember the first time I heard God’s voice: well, it wasn’t so much heard as it was felt. I was dwelling on my past and the wrongs I had done: the lies I told, the people I had hurt, especially the ones I loved the most. In that moment I truly regretted the things that I had done. I did not know it at the time but this would be the first time I repented. I felt a vibration deep in my chest, like my whole chest was a subwoofer. Through those vibrations I heard God telling me that he knew I would make those mistakes and that I was forgiven. For the first time I actually felt forgiven for my sins.
After this interaction with God, I really started listening to his voice and being more aware of his presence. I started seeing him more and more often. I began reading the Bible and found that I could get even closer to him by building a relationship with his Son Jesus, the Messiah. I could actually be friends with the person who did the most selfless act for me. Someone who paid for my sins and truly loves me even though I don’t deserve it. I found a place where I am wanted, where I am loved, where I am cared for, where I am free and that place is with Jesus.
I now know where I belong.