Florida Gulf Coast University

Brian Pruett

I was raised in a Christian home and my parents made it a point to go to church every time that the doors were open.  I went to Christian schools, went to churchcamp, basically everything that a Christian parent would want their kid to experience.  I was a hypocrite though.  I didn't fully understand what it meant to be a christian.  I acted one way around my church friends and another way with my friends from school.  I learned to watch my language at church but still be able to cuss with my buddies.  I was just trying to fit in with everybody like a lot of kids do.  I wanted people to think I was cool so I would do whatever it took to seem "cool."

All my life I've been more worried about what others thought of me and what they would say.  I lived for their acceptance and died from their rejection.  People's opinions of me were the most important thing in my life.  I had such a small view of God.  I cared more about what others thought of me more than what my Creator thinks of me. 

I realized that I knew about God but didn't know who He really was. I realized that all the good things I can do in life doesn't make me a Christian.  But realizing that no amount of good things could ever be good enough.  I realized I needed God's grace. I couldn’t earn it.  The only way I can be saved was God sending his Son to die for my wrongs so that if I put my faith and trust in Him I am forever forgiven (Ephesians 2:8). God became so real to me, my life began to change. Everything started to make sense for the first time in my life. 

Having a relationship is different than having a religion. Religion is simply just behavior modification. Religion tries to make the outside look pretty but fails to address the problems on the inside.  Jesus changes you by starting on the inside. So when I read my Bible and talk to God it changes who I am on the inside, which makes me want to change how I live.  So I'm not "Religious"... I just live for Jesus because He died for me.  

I believe everything happens for a reason.  I'm where I'm at for a reason and I don't want to waste anytime.  I trust that God has big plans for my life that are way better than my own.  Instead of trying to find time for God in my life, I've learned to live my life around God.

I still don’t have it all figured out.  I'm not perfect and I never will be.  I make mistakes all the time.  I don't read my Bible everyday and I still forget to pray.  So, I'm not saying I'm better than anyone else when I say I'm a christian, I'm just admitting I can't do it on my own.  I still don’t have it all figured out, but that’s what I love about God.  He can take someone like me whose been trying to fit in with everyone my whole life and make me stand out and be bold about my faith.

  • Jeremiah 29:11  I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for prosperity not harm.  Plans to give you hope and a future.
  • Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine that others see yourgood works and glorify your Father in heaven.
  • 1 Cor. 10:31 Whether you eat ordrink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.