Personal Reflection: Why I’m Not the Same Person I Was When I Was Younger

When I was little, my life was very simple. I’ve lived in the same small town for my whole life. I’ve always been in a sheltered community, and I’ve always felt safe in my surroundings. My life now is still very good, but it is a lot more complicated. It is good in a different way. I am a different person from who I was when I was little.

    My testimony is different from so many other people. When I was younger, I went to church every Sunday and every Wednesday. I still do, in fact. When I was little, I said I was a Christian.  I had been saved, but I wasn’t really living it. I didn’t do anything bad like drugs or alcohol, but I also wasn’t very willing to help people or to minister to those around me, even the ones I knew weren’t saved. When I was 13, the youth pastor gave a really good message about Jesus, and how He came to save everyone – that’s why He died on the cross. He did it to give “anyone who believes in Him eternal life” (John 3:16). Of course, I already knew this. I’ve gone to church my whole life, but it was a good reminder for me. I realized I wasn’t exactly living what I was saying. That night, I rededicated myself to Him. I asked Him to help me to follow Him, to be more willing to help others, to be more willing to spread the Gospel and to act like the Christian I am. He answered my prayer. Today, when people ask me to help them find their classroom or tutor them in some class they need help or anything else, I try to help them as much as I can. I learned that if I will even just give someone, even someone I don’t know, a smile in the hall, it can make their whole day brighter. I’m a different person than I was when I was younger because He has changed me. I had a great life before. I had friends at school. My grades were always above average. My life is even better. My friends now are more encouraging and are Christians themselves. They are even better friends than I ever had before. My grades are still a lot higher than the norm, but they are even higher than before. I’m fifth in my class. I’ve never had to worry about my parents getting divorced, and it’s never really even crossed my mind. Sure, I still have challenges. Sure, my life was simpler when I was younger, as life always is, but I can handle the challenges life throws at me.

I learned that if I will even just give someone, even someone I don’t know, a smile in the hall, it can make their whole day brighter.”

— Colleen Starkey

    I’m so glad He saved me. I will be forever grateful that He changed me because it has made a big difference in my life. My story may not be the same as other Christians. I would be lying to say that I was a drug addict or that I went to jail and then He came in and saved my life, but even so, He still saved me. He still made me the person I am today, and that is who I want to be.