First Love

1224171815“…the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10

Do you remember your first love? You were probably in high school. He or she was the most wonderful being God had ever created; being around him/her made you feel all giddy—like nothing could bring you down. Even now, thinking back on that moment brings a sweet feeling upon your soul. But, alas, in most cases, it came to an end.

Now, what I am about to say, will not make sense to you if you have not accepted Jesus into your heart and established a loving relationship with Him. My hope is that because you are reading this right now, it won’t be too long before you make that all important step and discover a love that will never leave you nor forsake you. (Hebrews 13:5)

For those of you who have become part of the family of God, have been adopted, and are a child of God—I’m calling you to remember that time. Let me tell you about my time:-

It was a cold, snowy, winter’s night in January. My husband and I were young in our church-going days. And this was not just one service on Sunday, but a whole weekend of services! But, somehow we had committed ourselves to attending. I’ve got to tell you, it felt very strange, we didn’t know what to expect.

The second night (obviously the 1st night didn’t scare us away) the Pastor said there was going to be an altar call. I had no idea what an altar call   was, so I just sat and waited. It came time and Pastor Bill invited all who would ask for their sin to be forgiven and would accept the Lord’s mercy and grace to come forward and present themselves at the altar. “This must be the altar call,” I though.

My husband and I had been going through a terrible time. Finances, family upsets, and just struggling to keep our heads above water. I had no idea what I was doing but I felt myself rising from my seat stumbling over my husband’s knees, and walking down the aisle of this little, country church, towards the altar. Ole-sloo-foot was able to rattle my brain for a moment as I looked around and saw no one else moving. But the gravity of the pull of the Lord was too strong.

Soon I was kneeling at the altar. I was surrounded by what seemed like a cloud and I could hear the angels singing. I hear the Pastor praying over me, but what I hear most was a gentle, strong voice that portrayed a love like I’ve never known before, saying “Everything is going to be alright. I am with you.” I was in that cloud for the rest of the night.

We went home and went to bed, but I couldn’t sleep. I got up and went downstairs, picked up my hymnal and sang hymn after hymn, although many of them I had never heard, but somehow I seemed to know them. I have tried the best I could to walk with the Lord ever since.

Remembering that night restores my strength and leads me down the paths of righteousness. “The Lord is my strength and my might; he has become my salvation.” Psalm 118:14

Everyone’s experience is not the same, but it doesn’t make your experience any less legitimate. The Lord God calls each of us to Himself the shortest way we will go. For you see, “You did not choose me but I chose you…” (John 15:16) says the Lord.

Is the Lord calling you? Perhaps, He’s calling you to give testimony.


Dear Lord, thank you for Your gift of strength given to me through the presence of Your Holy Spirit. Have mercy upon me. In Jesus’ name I pray. AMEN


Psalm 51:12   Romans 8:15   2 Cor. 3:17   Isaiah 12:2

Published by

Betty Beach-Connell

Retired UM pastor now author. I have published 2 books--Embracing The Call (God will take you to places you never imagined) and Through the Storm ("Medications" for the soul). You may visit and read more about me on my web site

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