A Life In Progress - Ryan

God blessed me with a loving Mom and Dad and all the worldly possessions a child could want, which led to a lot of vanity.  My Mom, Dad, brother, and sister love me very much, and I’m grateful to have been blessed with a family as loving as them.

I attended a Catholic Church and was in the program’s roster from when I started school.  There I heard about this man named Jesus who came to take away my sin; honestly, at the time, I thought I was doing pretty well for myself in the IOU between me and God.  I did what the nuns said to do when they said to do it.  I loved God and wanted so badly to be loved by Him too.

I attended a Catholic school from pre-K to 6th grade and am now 24.  I know that wasn’t that long ago, but I spent the last ten years abusing nicotine and alcohol to dull my memories of the trauma I had endured during my formative years.  Throughout my teen years, I started looking at people as if they were a virus that needed purging.  Through escapism in psychology and other muses, I developed various defense mechanisms.  Among them, I learned how to disconnect from people and compartmentalize my pain.

Coming to America’s Keswick and staying at the Colony has helped me see that I deeply love every soul I meet.  During my stay here, God has allowed me to realize that I don’t need those old worldly labels that I once set my mind on seeking.  I am a child of God; as God’s child, I am called to love as He loves me and continues to love me more each day.  My favorite scripture, Romans 12:2, says, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

I have learned at the Colony of Mercy that the will of God is to love Him as He loves us and one another as we love ourselves.  By God’s grace, faithfulness, and mercy, I am conformed to the image He wants me to be.  I now strongly desire to pursue a calling in ministry and to spread the steadfast love of Jesus to the body of Christ.  Since coming to the Colony of Mercy, my parents have seen such a positive and peaceful change in my life that they’ve accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior!

I thank God for His mercy.  I thank God for His patience, for it is only by His perfect will that I can stand today as a changed man, delivered from substance addiction, firmly anchored in the faithful love of Christ our Lord, and growing forever into the place God has preordained for me.

If anyone doubts God’s love for them, think about what Jesus did on Calvary.  Praise be to our Lord Jesus Christ, who has conquered death, set the captives free, and torn the veil between us and Father for all eternity.

Thank you all for your prayers and thoughts!  God bless you.