Used with permission: Igor Klisov

Used with permission: Igor Klisov

A couple of weeks ago cops raced down our street around 9 o’clock at night and I knew something was going on. We live in a neighborhood where it’s not that unusual to see cops, but the way this one was on the run made me know that it wasn’t the same. I texted my friend down the street and she confirmed that there were cops everywhere. Next thing we know,  the houses around the house where the cops were are now being evacuated and they have even called in the SWAT team.

The night played out just like a movie. A robot went into the house first, a huge army-like truck pulled up, and they spent hours on a mega phone calling for the residents to come out. Finally around 4am the residents came out with their hands up. My friend down the street stayed up for the entire thing and watched from her house giving me a play-by-play.

As I thought through this night a few times since then, it has always struck me that there was a time in my life when I felt like those people in the house. When I felt as though I had no way out and the whole house was caving in on me. I felt like a hostage.

I grew up in a Christian environment and we went to church whenever the doors were open. My dad was a deacon, my parents were Sunday School directors, they served in the youth group, we did Wed night super, I was in GA’s and youth group and yet I still was hostage in my own body. I knew the answers, and could find the Beatitudes quicker than anyone else in Bible Drill, but yet I had no idea what it looked like to be a follower of Jesus.

After a few years in college of living a very reckless lifestyle is when I feel as though God started calling me out of my house on his megaphone. It’s as if I was never able to get away from the call of his voice. I kept on living my life and every once in a while when I would slow down just enough, or feel as though I was at the bottom of my pit, I would hear him calling me to come out and run to him.

He called me for years and I would push his voice aside, but one day I couldn’t push it aside anymore, and I knew what I needed to do. I knew that he was my safety. I knew that he was my comfort. I knew that he was my love. I knew that he was my security.

Just like the residents down the street that were keeping themselves hostage in a house while the police called for them, that was me for years. I held myself hostage as God called my name over and over. The thing that struck me the most is that those police men waited hours for them to come out, all the while they continued to call for them every few minutes.

God in his kindness never stopped calling my name. He waited and waited for me, and called and called, and one day I listened to him calling my name and ran to him. I was no longer holding myself hostage. I was running to his arms so he could hold me.