This week we have a testimony from Carisa. Carisa is a young lady who has made the choice to live for Jesus, even if she has to stand alone to do it!
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
I was born into a Reformed Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) home and was raised a strict vegetarian. Recipe for ridicule, yes? In primary school (elementary school), I was laughed at because of my meatless food. It was thought to be nasty and as a small child I felt badly. When I graduated to secondary school (high school) however, the situation gradually changed. Instead of scorning my food, my friends enjoyed tasting the new, different food and asked for more. I took the opportunity to introduce them to various vegetarian recipes and they were glad to get a glimpse into my lifestyle.
“At first, I felt left out because I was a christian. But not anymore!”
Similarly, throughout primary and secondary school I felt left out when I wasn’t allowed to attend school fairs and other events, most of which were held on Sabbaths. In secondary school, it became known that I was SDA and therefore wouldn’t attend any events on Friday nights.
Some peers would deliberately ask me if I would be attending just to laugh when I said “No…”, but their jeers didn’t get to me.
” I wasn’t supposed to be like others. I was a Christian and that made me different”
What I did not understand as a child, is that I was born to be different. I was not supposed to eat the same food as everyone else. I was not supposed to go to the same events as everyone else or do the same things. That was not my calling. And what I didn’t understand but came to realize, is that when you live for Jesus you will be persecuted (Matthew. 5:10-12)
“Christian youth are to be leaders and not follow the world’s lifestyle.”
As Christian young people our goal or aim should not to be as much like the world as possible but still be in the church. We are not called to follow all the worldly trends. We are called to be leaders not followers and be proud of the different lifestyles we lead, not ashamed (Roman.1:16). We are to be reformed in all aspects of life whether it be music, dress, diet, sexuality, speech, associations and not only for our sakes but also to send a message, a message of change.
“Christian young ladies can dress modestly and still be in style.”
Christian young ladies I urge you to stand out in your dress. Dressing modestly does not mean you can’t dress with style. It simply means you dress fashionably without exposing your bodies. Jessica Ray once said in her address “Modesty isn’t about covering up our bodies because they’re bad, modesty isn’t about hiding ourselves…it’s about revealing our dignity.”
“Be pure in mind and body”
In terms of sexuality, we are called to stay pure till marriage, pure in mind (Philippians.4:8) and pure in body (1 Corinthians.6:19, 20). Abstain from sexual behavior and separate yourselves from anyone who encourages you to do otherwise. Young ladies, I urge you to preserve your best self for your husband and him alone. Young men keep yourselves pure for your future wife. When the peer pressure comes and they say that you are not a real man if you don’t indulge in certain behavior, be a leader and say:
“Real men stay pure till marriage and respect young ladies.
Remember, God has called us to set a high standard, but He does not allow us to maintain it in our own strength. He has provided the strength and grace to help us to stand out and we can do it in His power. (Psalms.27:14; 29:11). We are to be modern day Daniels, Esthers, Josephs and Ruths. Study their lives and be encouraged. Finally, I join with Britt Nicole in her song and say: