Valerie is a 42-year-old, single, Reformed Christian lady who lives in Baltimore. She doesn't remember a time
before she knew and loved Jesus, but she does remember accepting John Calvin into her heart in March of 2000.
Valerie is a member of Christ Reformed Evangelical Church in Annapolis.
Though her career aspiration is to be a housewife, Valerie has not yet found anyone suitable who wishes to hire
her for employment in that field (or, more properly, anyone suitable has not found her), so in the meantime she
earns her daily bread working in communications -- editing, writing, print design and website management.
My Cousin Susan Died a Few Days Ago
Second cousin once removed, actually (my mother's first cousin's granddaughter...got that?). She was only 42 -- not quite a year older than I. I only met her twice, I think, but once was during the summer I turned 12, and her family vacationed in New England at the same time my family was in NH, and we spend the better part of a week or two together as I traveled with them to visit their other relatives in the region. I remember the three Barlow girls and I counting all the pigs in their (grandmother's? great aunt's?) collection -- including every porcine picture in every story book. I suspect this was at my instigation; it's the sort of thing I'd want to do even now.
That time was very formative for me. I had never met a family who actually prayed together, and I'd never heard anyone pray, "Dear Jesus..." While I think it's generally most theologically correct to pray to the Father in Jesus' name, it deeply affected me to encounter people for whom the Lord was clearly a real Person with whom they had a real personal connection.
There were a couple other life-changing events that same summer. I went to music camp where we sang sappy songs all week, but again, I was struck by the personal connectedness to Christ I saw in the people around me that week. I walked the aisle on the last night (there were altar calls every night) and told the counselor, "I want to know Jesus better."
Although I've no doubt I was saved long before then, that summer brought a conversion of sorts -- a significant lurch forward in my walk with Christ. It made me brave enough to say no to someone who had been hurting me, even though that meant losing the closest relationship I had. Jesus became enough; His grace became sufficient.
It still is. And I still want to know Him better...like I bet Susie does now!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 10:29 PM
On August 6, 2009 12:35 AMReformedwrote... Thanks for posting this. I'm going through one of those glorious times of God stirring up in me the concept of a "personal connectedness to Christ" that you mention. It is a comforting thought to know ever more deeply how much He loves His children and equips them with all they need to walk through the pilgrimage He has set before them.