Corey Shaffer is an OR nurse at Mission Hospital, and has been attending Missio Dei for 4 years. Here, she shares what God has been teaching her lately about grace and the freedom we can find in him.
“Four years ago I moved to Asheville, and it was probably the loneliest time in my entire life, because I had just moved to the hole in the Bible Belt, and it was extremely difficult to find community. Instantly I came to Missio and the first Sunday I was there I made a friend, who then asked me out to lunch, who then became my roommate, and now I have really great community thanks to Missio. I am in Olivia and Nathan Marone’s community group and they have taught me so much. They’re both so knowledge and they’ve taught me more about the Bible in the past 2 years than I’ve ever learned. They’ve continuously spurred me on to keep learning and reading and digging and they really push me to want to know what I really believe.”
“I always grew up going to church. I went to a Christian school that kind of bred me to believe that there’s a book of rules and you have to follow them. No one really touched on grace for me growing up. There wasn’t a lot of grace in my household; it was kind of always this really high expectation, which is good because I continue to push myself and grow, but at the same time I feel like I went into adulthood and I didn’t even know what grace was. Honestly what I feel God is teaching me this year is that we are flawed, and for the first time in my life I’m okay with the fact that I’m flawed and that I have to rely on God’s grace daily. And it’s crazy how much pressure I’ve put on myself over the past couple of years just to exceed in my life, to exceed in my community, to excel in whatever avenue of life I was pursuing. You need to be the best, you need to try harder, you’re not doing enough, and for the first time in my life I realize, no, God made me this way, and its ok to just have a season to just be at peace with him. You don’t always have to be spurring on; if I’m just learning about him and his word and if I’m just being challenged in my spiritual life that’s enough. So I feel like it’s been a freeing season to just know that even though I’m flawed, I’m enough, and that the Lord loves me. He’s not making a list of all the times that I’ve failed, and tallying and holding that against me…It’s taken 10- 15 years for me to realize as adult that Gods doesn’t have this list of expectations, so it’s good to live in that freedom.”
“Gods been teaching me so much to not stack myself up against other people because it’s not good and it’s not healthy. I find myself doing that a lot with my classmates who have graduated from college and I see them and they either have a family or they are going back to grad school or whatever it is, and I find myself stacking myself up next to them. God’s just been saying to me, “No, I have you in this season and I’m gonna grow you in my time, and it’s gonna be slow and its gonna be hard, but I’m with you.” So I guess I’ve been really convicted, even though I’m aware of the fact that God has grace for me and I don’t need to be perfect, but I still struggle with that…. I really think right now I’m just supposed to grow in my faith and grow where I am and invest in people here and love them through struggles. A lot of my coworkers have been going through really hard times and just being able to love them through that and pray for them has been incredible, and I’m waiting expectantly to see what God is going to do through that.”