Meet Pam Hage. She’s a Stonecroft volunteer in California who carries with her God’s peace, joy, and hope. But Pam’s life hasn’t always been that way. As a young mother, she fell into a depression not long after the birth of one of her children. When her family moved across the country, a new neighbor invited Pam to a Stonecroft Bible Study. There, Pam learned what it means not just to believe in Jesus, but to have a relationship with Him. When Pam began her forever relationship with Christ, her life transformed. A few years later, tragedy struck.
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I believed everything I was taught. I was water baptized and things, whatever the church said. But I didn’t know a personal relationship with God. And I didn’t know I could have one until I went to that Stonecroft Bible Study. Eight years after I accepted the Lord through that Stonecroft study, my daughter, 14 years old, passed away. Her heart stopped while she was playing racquetball. And that’s where everything changed in my life.
I had to understand how, why. And that’s when I began reading the Bible as much, because the Bible is God’s Word. Friends were comforting me all the time: “God loves you.” But I couldn’t believe it at the time. I had to hear it from Him.
And so when I began reading the Bible – almost 24 hours a day at first – really just love poured out of those pages to me. Even to the point where it felt like God was hugging me, holding me, letting me know He would get me through this. He showed me He wasn’t punishing me. You know, as long as we’re here, there are going to be problems, and difficulties, and tragedies.
And then He showed me how much He loved me by showing me the tremendous sacrifice that God the Father made in giving His only begotten Son to die for me, to pay the penalty for my sin.
That’s when probably my deep love for the Lord began during that time. It was a horrible, difficult time; yet, the sweetest time. Because that changed everything. That changed my relationship to extremely personal.
And then, just life changes. I’ve had several medical issues, even six hip surgeries, which is unheard of. I’m just now being able to walk again, to get along, to shop again, that’s pretty good (chuckles). But anyway, when I’m going through a difficult time, that time alone with God is the most precious time ever because He does comfort me, He does give me joy in the midst of it. I’ve had people say that to me, “You’re joyful. How are you joyful when you’re in pain?”
I don’t know, but I do know: It’s the Lord. He gives me peace and joy. I love it. And hope!