Karen’s Testimony

Karen Graley

Karen Graley

As a very small child in Sunday school, a teacher asked me during Sunday school if I had ever asked Jesus into my heart.  When I said, “No” she asked me if I would like to do that.  I did, right there in my little child-sized chair.

I was strongly influenced by saints in the church who were much further along in their spiritual journey, who testified to God’s unwavering love toward them and the peace that came from remaining true to Jesus.  I still recall with profound clarity as a young adult, the testimony of J.B. Galloway in the Orange Church of the Nazarene on a Sunday night when he stood in that pew and told us through sobbing tears of God’s magnificent grace and forgiveness.  He told how just that week he had had a fresh encounter with God and repented of some recent sin he was guilty of; J.B. was 90+ years old and had accepted Jesus into his life at age 3, living his distinguished life as a testimony to the saving power of Christ.  As a young adult, I could not fathom what sin a 90 year old man of J.B.’s character could have committed, but his deep and dramatic gratitude for this new act of God’s mercy impressed me and reaffirmed to me that God loved me just as much as J.B. and would do the same for me.

Life came at me with gusto and is still surprising me with challenges I didn’t expect.  God was faithful through all of it – bad decisions, mistakes, injustices beyond my control, emotional pain – and even when I willfully walked away from him into what I knew was sin.  Yet my heart remained tender and I returned to Jesus, embracing his forgiveness and mercy for my rebellion against him.

In retrospect, I can see God’s faithfulness to me throughout my life, his unconditional love for me in spite of my behavior.  I have proven his character time and time again; he is what he says he is in the Bible.  He does what he says he will do.  He is totally worthy of your trust in Him.  He loves me, and you, with mind-blowing, unexplainable passion. He is excited about me – which means he is excited about you, too.  I highly recommend him to you.