Sometimes I just stop and look at where God has me and I thank Him for those storms I had to weather and all those “unanswered” prayers (He answered His way, not mine).

Before I moved back home two years ago, I was “living the life” in Arizona. I had a good boyfriend, who I lived with, attended church every week and spent lots of time with my friends drinking wine. Life was good right? I was a “good Christian woman” and the way I was living my life seemed acceptable. My friends would tell me, “You’re married in God’s eyes,” “Jesus turned water into wine,” and “As long as you love Jesus, you’re saved…you don’t have to do anything else.”

Around 2016, I joined a small group at my church and began to feel convicted about my living arrangement. I prayed that God would change this man I lived with into a Godly man. I  stopped drinking the “daily wine” and my friends would tell me they missed the “old Andrea”. Then the bottom dropped, and I was left a single mom with two children who had distanced myself from my drinking friends. I grew up without a father in my life and the last thing I wanted was for my children to experience that.

Not knowing what my next move would be, I ran to Jesus. I dove into the Word and began hiking multiple times a week just to get to the top of the mountain where I felt closer to Him. It was incredibly peaceful! I felt God tell me to go back to Monroe where I would be with my family…He had plans for us there. Doors began to close, and I knew it was time to step into obedience.

In June of 2018, my girls and I packed up a U-Haul and moved to Monroe. It was difficult, but I knew this was the path God was lighting for us. My three step plan was to find a church, find a place to serve and find a job or rebuild my company here. Step one was easy as I feel right into an incredible church family at Christ Church. Second, I found Grace Place where I met Rhonda and felt the Holy Spirit moving!

As I was job searching, doors began to shut again and the ones available did not sit well with me. I began to wonder if I had made a mistake, then God opened a door I least expected… at Grace Place! When I came aboard as staff, there was an overwhelming peace and I knew that God had me there for such a time as this.

I tell my story because I was that “asleep” Christian, going to church on Sunday, but not living it daily. I was being lead by myself, not the Holy Spirit.

“I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:15-16

There is not a person anywhere who can be a Christian without the Holy Spirit. There is not a person who can follow Christ without the help of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit sees everything that goes on. He knows what goes on in our hearts. He knows what goes on in our minds. Nothing is hidden from Him. You have the same Holy Spirit that Christ does within you!  We just need to activate it!!

The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, He will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you. Romans 8:11 

Let’s step out of our comfort zones in obedience to God…He does not fail!! We are all ministers and we all have gifts we can use to glorify God!

“Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:12

Take a look at the world around us…people are lost. If not you, then who…if not now, then when? Let’s get beyond ourselves and let Him lead. Is it easy? No, but it sure is worth everything!!

God is so good!! May you know the freedom and peace that only comes from being lead by the Holy Spirit!!

Andrea McDonald