It wasn’t until I arrived at Training Camp that I got a fresh testimony of grace. People make mistakes. They try so hard to do what is right, but end up in failure. This summer, I focused on my mistakes and ended up feeling guilt, shame, and loneliness. When I would tell God that I was sorry, I heard silence. Grace to me was that God still loved me even though I’m not perfect. Little did I realize that when I asked for forgiveness and tried to talk to him, I still felt he was displeased with me. I imagined that look of displeasure on God’s face whenever I would mess up and would feel like I would have to compensate for it. My understanding of grace was like a teeter-totter. Sometimes I would sway to the left and think that I knew all about grace, and sometimes I would sway to the right and think grace was totally confusing.

The day I went into the prayer room at church with the whole group of first-year missionaries was when my view of grace completely changed. There are three teams of first-year missionaries that are going to three different cities. In the prayer room, each team took turns facing the wall and then the two other teams would lay their hands on someone’s shoulder so the opposite person facing the wall would pray for them. The person facing the wall didn’t know whose hand was on their shoulder.

I had never prophesied. Words could not describe how I felt when the first hand touched my shoulder. At that moment, I told God to speak to me for this person. Almost instantly I heard one word. Healer. The words started to flow as I spoke to someone that was anonymous to me. After speaking over three people, I started to realize just how easy it is to hear from God when your heart is sincere, when you don’t focus on your imperfections, when you just see God for who he is. He is loving, understanding, and unpredictable. God likes to speak to each person in different ways. One way is dreams, another is words, and then also pictures or visions. He knows are not perfect and we will never be. Yet he still opens his arms to us and says, “I love you and I’m not going anywhere.”

I don’t want to run away anymore. God is always yearning to be with his children. I don’t need to hide my sin anymore. He still loves me regardless of my past, present, and future. The more I get to know God, the more he starts to use me for his glory, the more sin looks unappetizing. This doesn’t mean I won’t sin anymore, because I’m still human. I will follow him because I love him.