Carole Sparks’s Testimony

// How she came to know Christ in her own words //

I was a pretty good kid. I worked hard to obey my parents and do what was right. Because I grew up in church (Literally—we were there almost as much as we were at home), I knew the facts of “accepting Jesus as my personal Savior” from a very early age. But knowing and believing are two very different things. Through His Word, the stories of His people, and the convincing of the Holy Spirit, I came to understand that I could never be good enough or right enough to really please God. That’s frustrating. Alongside that realization, however, it became clear that Jesus had been good enough and right enough for the both of us…actually for all of humanity. And that’s liberating! Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God opened the way for me to be constantly in His presence. Having agreed with Him that I was totally inadequate on my own, He adopted me, so to speak, into His family.

 

For a few years, I thought everything was settled because I knew where I was going after I died. Again, using His Word, other people, and the Holy Spirit, He demonstrated that following Christ is about just that: following His direction (which I understand through reading the Bible and prayer) as I go through my days, as I make decisions, as I live out this life on earth. He called me to follow Him from the beginning; it just took me awhile to catch on to what that meant.

 

All those years ago, if I had known what I know now, I might have turned my back on Jesus before I ever got started. We’ve been through some really tough circumstances where the comfort and leading of Jesus were the only way we survived. We’ve also been through some incredible blessings that could only have come from Him. That’s why I can confidently say that I have joy regardless of my circumstances and peace that never wavers.

The Writer’s Journey

// A short biography of Carole Sparks //

Carole’s list of “former-” positions continues to lengthen: former architect, minister’s wife, and overseas worker/ESL teacher. Although she doesn’t claim these titles any more, each still colors her perspective on the world. Then there are the titles—the more important ones—that never reach the status of “former”: wife, mother, Christ-follower.

 

Carole grew up in church and has been reading the Bible since she was a child, but as an adult, she almost quit. The questions rolled through her mind: What more could there be? How many times was she required to read the same words over and over? Why was her spiritual life a short series of major experiences with no story in between? Merely reading wasn’t enough anymore. Instead of quitting, Carole pushed back. As she explored and pondered God’s Word, He began to reveal Himself like someone unfolding a complex piece of origami. That was 1999. He is still unfolding (Romans 11:33).

 

Coupled with her passion for the Bible, God has gifted Carole as a teacher. She finds her greatest satisfaction in passing along fresh ancient Truth to . . . well, anyone who will listen. The tone of her writing reflects the teachability of a life-long learner and the companionship of a fellow traveler.