My name is Courtney Hustins, and I have been saved by God’s grace. I was born in Oshawa, Ont., and I am 20 years old. I grew up going to The Salvation Army with my parents and younger sister. I was always active in my church, helping with whatever I could, and was part of many groups.
I tried to live a life with one foot in the door and one foot out the door of Christianity. If anyone were to ask me if I was a Christian, I would have said yes. I went to church on Sunday mornings, but nothing I did outside of a church building demonstrated an intimate relationship with Jesus. When I lived this way, I didn’t understand anything about my purpose or how I fit into this world. Any form of “happiness” I experienced during this time was a trick sent from the enemy. The life I lived seemed fun and exciting, but it only brought temporary fulfilment. I would always walk away feeling empty.
For about four years, I chose to live a lifestyle ignorant of the mercy and forgiveness Jesus offers. During this time, Satan worked to turn me against Christian community, and he was successful. Emotionally, I reached a place where Christians constantly bothered or frustrated me. There were Sundays when the thought of going to church and seeing other Christians made me feel physically sick.
In February 2020, I went on a Christian retreat with a friend. She was the only person I knew before arriving, but I felt so welcome and comfortable. That weekend, I confessed to those around me that I wasn’t proud of the life I was living. I finally admitted to myself that a life without Jesus was not enough and repented for straying so far away from him. In those moments of vulnerability, I experienced indescribable peace. I could feel the presence of Jesus resting on me, welcoming me home. I was a new creation in Christ, through his grace.
When I left that weekend, I no longer felt hopeless. Instead, I felt like I could finally see the path to a fulfilling life and eternity with Jesus.
Although I was not ready to give Jesus every aspect of my life immediately, God slowly and gently convicted me of the way I was living. In September, I reached a place where I was prepared to surrender it all. Psalm 37:4 says, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” When I finally took delight in all that Jesus had done for me, I felt indescribable joy. Jesus took my heart and flipped it inside out.
I am now committed to living a life wholeheartedly devoted to my Saviour. I desire to know and understand God’s heart, to be part of a Christian community and to live a life that follows the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I am now able to wake up each morning confident, free from the chains of insecurity, healed through the power of Christ and aware that I am a precious daughter of the King.
God has spoken to me about living a life of authenticity and has inspired me to share his transforming love with others. Through much prayer and discernment, I’ve chosen to follow this calling on my life by participating in a discipleship training program. In January 2022, I will leave for Mexico, where I will spend the next six months learning more about Jesus and sharing the gospel with others through outreach. If you are able to support me through prayer, words of encouragement or financially, that would be so appreciated.
Nothing but God could have changed my life. He has given me joy that I never knew possible. He has healed me.