Hello my name is Jessica Flores. I will start by saying I didn’t grow up in a Christian home. My mom believed in Jesus but didn’t go to church. Even though we’ve always struggled financially and had other problems she’s done her best in raising my siblings and I and I love her so much. My Dad hasn’t really ever been in the picture; he was always in and out of jail and sadly a few years ago I chose to cut all contact with him because of something he did. On the other hand I have a step dad who I appreciate.
Throughout my life I’ve been through circumstances that have caused me to deal with feelings of uncertainty, confusion, shame, depression, I was afraid of certain things, I doubted myself a lot and although on the outside I seemed fine, on the inside I felt like I wasn’t good enough. There was always this void, an emptiness inside. I’d try and fill it with things of the world that were just so temporary.
However, this past year I made it a point to find a church because I wanted to become closer to Jesus. I needed Him. And I must say, thank goodness for the fender bender accident, or maybe even my insurance provider who sent me to the car repair place, because, it was there that I had a conversation with a man who told me about HDC. I think it was in March when I first came, the first time I left feeling like, hmm I wasn’t sure if it was the church for me, but quickly something was telling me to just keep coming. Yes I came back and I love it. One morning I think it was June 14 about a week before my birthday, I was here with my grandma during the 11am service and I remember Pastor Todd saying something of this nature, even if you have accepted Jesus as your Lord and savior and you feel you want to do it again, do it and you can take communion with us. And it hit me because I was just thinking that: “I know I’ve done this time and time again but now I better understand and I am ready to follow Jesus. So I did it! Worship was extra good that morning. I stood and I cried while singing along to Amazing Grace. My chains are gone I’ve been set free... My Lord my savior had ransomed me. I really felt the Holy Spirit. That morning we were also given this name tag that read: Hello, I am __Blank___ (I filled the blank with shameful then on top MADE NEW). After service pinned it on the wall along with everyone else. I knew this was the beginning of something beautiful. I kept coming every Sunday, and despite my fear and nervousness, I even joined the women’s group (love those women. fellowship is so important.) I went to a retreat and I continue to better understand and strengthen my relationship with God.
Yes I’ve always had faith in Jesus but never before as I do now. I know that this is just the beginning God isn’t finished with me yet. This is my journey of redemption. Trust me when I say this: His will is far greater and more fulfilling than my own and it is much easier to just let go and let God do his part. I am working on surrendering my all to the Lord, because he is the only one who has given me a feeling of wholeness I couldn’t find anywhere else, he gives me balance, peace and guidance and when I begin to slip up a little he is right there every step of the way. Oh how good it feels to know I will never be alone. The Holy Spirit is within me and I will do great things for Jesus!