Alyssa Ofstedahl

Paris, France

Rebellion, Loss and a Faithful Love

I grew up going to church with my parents, I knew what the Bible said and how I was supposed to live as a Christian. I wanted to be a “good girl,” to please my parents and to please this God I thought I knew. I set high standards for myself to work hard and perform well. When I got to high school, it became more important to please my friends and soon I was going against what my parents and the Bible asked of me. I rebelled against what I knew was right because I was seeking acceptance from friends and boys. Every time I caved into peer pressure, I felt shame and guilt. I knew God wanted me to live differently, but I did not understand how or trust that His way was better.

Before my second year at university, my mom got diagnosed with cancer. Throughout the year she slowly declined. I remember praying so fervently that God would heal her, that he would work a miracle. Throughout her sickness and pain, my mom remained faithful to God, trusting His Word, knowing that He is good in all circumstances, knowing that He was with her always. I remember watching her, amazed at the joy she could experience despite the pain. As she declined, her faith in God grew. The morning she passed away, I sat and talked with her as she rested in her chair. She wasn’t completely coherent, but she called me “beautiful.” The sadness and hurt I felt from losing her is beyond words, but I knew my mom was right. I am a beautiful child of God, and He is with me always, He is good no matter my circumstances, and I can trust Him completely because he is faithful.

God’s love is never ending and unconditional. Despite my rebellion, God continued to chase after me. He has redeemed me and made me righteous through Jesus. When I was unfaithful, God continued to be faithful to me. He will never leave or forsake me. Despite the loss of my mother and the pain I experienced and continue to experience, God is faithful to His promise to use all things for good. He is faithful to carry me through the valley of the shadow of death when I cannot walk alone.


It doesn’t matter what you have done or the pain you have experienced. God wants to take these burdens and give you new life. He wants to prove that His love for you is faithful and enduring. Though I do not always understand God’s ways, I know He is forever faithful and completely good, that I am fully known, accepted, and loved by Him.

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