Have you ever tried to describe your life in one word? “Eventful” would have to be my word of choice! There have been many times where I could laugh, and many times where I held my head low. However, through it all I thank God for His grace, and His promise to always be with me.

Have you ever had a paper due? If you have attended any regular public school, the answer is yes. How about having a paper due for an advanced placement class that is late? This brings about a different story, and a completely different set of emotions! I remember one class where I had completely missed a deadline on a paper like this. It was the final paper of the year and I had let myself once again become swamped! As I went to talk to the teacher of this class, you would have thought I was walking to an executioner. The fear in my mind, the sweat on my face, the nervousness was overwhelming! I was in desperate need of some grace. Skipping forward to the end of the story, the teacher did indeed grade my paper and I passed the class! I bring up this story because I should have failed the class, yet I was given another chance. This concept of mercy and grace completely defines my relationship with God, and where He brought me from.

When I was young, I struggled a lot with my identity. I was overweight as a child and many kids, even friends, would pick on me. Yet, when I went home for some comfort, it was not always found. This sent me into a downward spiral of suffering and hopelessness. I was beginning to develop a mile-sized wound over my fist-sized heart. The real story however, comes in my response to this wound.

Wanting attention and affirmation, I started participating with the “in” crowd on every possible occasion. I found myself partying as if ignorance actually was “bliss.” Drugs and alcohol became the norm since “everyone was doing it.” Looking back at my dishonor of women now makes me sick to my stomach. I was a mere citizen trying to complete a doctor’s surgery. I was making the wrong cuts with an unclean scalpel, leaving an infected hemorrhage flowing from my chest. The roller coaster of my life sped downward so low during one point, that my life was at jeopardy! It took a near encounter with death before I was brought to my senses and decided to give church a try.  However, that day I went I encountered God, and I encountered His grace hard.

The thing that struck me the most was hearing the pastor talk about God being a King who was all powerful, yet He gave up everything for us. Knowing how I would behave as a king, this perplexed me! Someone with overwhelming riches, unspoken influence, and endless power would stoop down to help me? It is a miracle that this King even knows my name. Nonetheless, I was speechless and decided to receive this amazing grace. In hindsight, I am nowhere near perfect or completely healed. However, through this roller coaster, spiral, whatever you would call it, I met a Man who knows my name. I met someone who will never look down on me as if I am inferior. And I now know that the dream of having a perfect friend is a reality in Jesus. 



Robert Broadus