Jesus called me at the bus stop! (My Inspiration:Testament)
My Testament is about the Inspiration that fuels my painting.
I was standing at a bus stop in a remote village in South Korea
called Boeun. It was a warm spring morning and I was feeling very
depressed. I must have looked sad because a girl who was standing
next to the nearby shop came over and in broken English said:
"You look sad. Why don't you come to my church?"
I tried to be polite and so we sat together on the bus, but I had no
intension of going to her church. As far as as I was concerned this
was for weird Jesus bible bashers and like the U.K many people who go
are only Christian at church but once they leave on a Sunday
afternoon they become the way they were before. Hypocrites.
My view of church life was based on my childhood experience of people
getting dressed up in their finest and parading in front of everyone
else trying to catch people's eye, thinking "look at me I have lots of
money, and you have nothing". All for show. It made me sick!
I really didn't understand. I'm not saying that there aren't people
like that only there's more to it.
It was like a big secret.
We exchanged mobile phone numbers then I waved goodbye to her from my
seat on the bus. I wasn't expecting to hear from her again.
I was working at a large outdoors centre where I taught an
Art/ English course. It was a huge complex which had its own shop.
Sometimes I would go and buy cold drinks there.(Jesus slipped from my mind....)
One very hot summers day a few months later I went to the shop to buy
some ice-cream. The women behind the counter was very friendly and asked
if I would come to her church. I didn't have many friends and she
seemed honest so I said when and where. She arranged to pick me up
and so I was inspired to go with her the following Sunday.
Guess who was the first person to meet me at the door?
Yes you're right it was the girl from the bus stop.
You can imagine my surprise!
At first I thought that the service was a little strange as everyone
was really into it waving their arms in the air and singing some hymn
in Korean but then I met a wonderful lady who happened to be
the Pastors wife. She translated the service into English for me and
I found myself totally engrossed. (I never thought in a million years that I would be writing my inspiration testament a year later!) It was as if the service
had been written just for me.
My life in the U.K had been very difficult. I had left an
abusive boyfriend and a life of slavery to my job. I came to Korea
with high expectations of a new start but still felt empty and uninspired.
My friends at home were Christians but I just didn't understand.
The local church was full of members and had a large proportion of
young people. I was so surprised to see them taking it so seriously.
The pastor’s wife explained to me that Presbyterians apply what
is written in the bible to every day life. The life situations for
the people in the Old and New Testament are the same as the
situations that we all experience now. Except in the bible there are
answers and guidelines through the original saints experience of
them. I tried to read the bible before and tried to understand its
meaning but all I could see was old 'crusty' stories about people
who were long dead.
I was inspired to go on a Wednesday night along with my Sunday as
I found my interest in the bible and the pastor's sermons growing.
They were really helping me understand my life situations without
the cliché of 'fire and brimstone.'(I was feeling more inspiration flowing in!)
like a kind of psychological therapy I felt my life experiences
unravel themselves one by one as the Pastor continued every Sunday.
I became a voyeur playing through every negative situation in my mind.
I really saw myself for the first time.
In the service I cried allot and through time I felt lighter, more
open and most of all joyful! I worked through every negative memory
that presented itself, understanding it for what it was, learning
from it through the bible and letting it go.
My sins lifted like a heavy burden.
For the first time in my life I felt free!
My slate was wiped clean, I felt new and alive!
The biggest revelation came for me when the pastor's wife explained
that this process is normal when you open your heart to God through
I accepted Jesus into my life as I believe that he was at my
side holding my hand as I went through the pain of reliving every
bad memory and situation. He experienced the pain with me and washed
away my sins through my tears.
From that point I understood the Crucifixion and I realised that he
died taking on the pain and burdens of the world not just mine
so that we might know God and experience his love and joy.
This is a constant inspiration to me.
Since then I have been careful not to fall into any situational
traps. Asking God through Jesus before I make any decisions.
If I realise that I've made a mistake I offer it to God and try and
learn from it.
This is my Testament.
It's not easy as we're not perfect but I don't feel empty anymore.
Through God life has become my teacher and I a student. I seek direction
through him and so you never know perhaps it may be me who is the stranger
that YOU meet at the bus stop so be ready to become INSPIRED!