Dark times drove Sarah to reconsider eternal questions
Life was comfortable and pleasant for Sarah Myers and her family until cancer and relationship trouble threatened her loved ones at the age of 18.
"Until God said 'no' to just about everything important in my life, I only saw Him as the magic genie in a bottle who granted wishes," she says.
Up until that point Sarah did not seem to have a care in the world and enjoyed living in a peaceful home.
"I was so comfortable in my life, I had no need for a 'Saviour'," she says.
"There was nothing I needed saving from because there was nothing wrong with my life.
"I viewed Jesus as someone who gave me warm, fuzzy feelings and that was about it."
She grew up thinking she "knew the right answers" because her father was a music pastor and she attended church every week but in the back of her mind she questioned why God was needed when her life seemed so perfect.
One night when Sarah was around 14 she was challenged by a guest preacher to consider whether her life was acceptable to God and she was given the chance to pray and accept Jesus as her own personal Saviour.
She questioned in her mind what the speaker meant by the word 'Saviour' and it suddenly dawned on her that, no matter how good life seemed to be going, she had rebelled against God and was imperfect and unacceptable to Him.
She realised that her real problem was actually a matter of the heart and that she needed to acknowledge that Jesus, God the Son, had paid the price for her sins when He died on the cross.
"After class was over I went up and told the preacher that I wanted to have Jesus as my Saviour but he said that he was not talking to me, he was talking to the kids in the back."
She remembers feeling crushed that she had not felt a "real" feeling, and began to resent religion as being all talk". But God was not finished with her.
After returning to her normal life routine, Sarah says her need for God was revealed during a very dark time in her late teenage years.
"In a short space of time my mother had a tumour removed, my grandfather had cancer and the five-year relationship with my boyfriend ended," she says.
"God took me to rock bottom before I began to truly search for Him."
Her circumstances served as a wake-up call and as she began to re-evaluate where her life was at. She saw how much she had taken for granted.
"I realised that I had grown cold and complacent. My past problems and the bitterness I harboured towards that guest speaker caused me to shut out pain and anger until I simply felt nothing," she says.
"Despite this, God's unchanging steadiness found me at my most unsteady time."
Her life no longer "perfect", Sarah humbly realised how fragile and uncertain her future really was and how God had been there for her through every obstacle in the past, even when she felt let down by people.
"When I turned back to God I could feel that my heart had been changed and filled with love for all of God's people," she says.
"I feel that, despite whether my circumstances are good or bad, He is still the only constant in my life and this keeps me close because I can't have that bond with anyone else."