You are currently viewing Summer 2024 Testimonies 11: Cara Vallance McMichael

Summer 2024 Testimonies 11: Cara Vallance McMichael

Summer 2024 Testimonies 11: Cara Vallance McMichael

Because I had the immense privilege of being raised in a Christian home, I knew for as long as I can remember the gospel truth: I am a sinner, separated from God because of my sin, and in need of having Jesus as my own Savior. 

It didn’t necessarily feel like a privilege when I was young, but now I thank God that He chose to put me in the home that He did. My parents prioritized the Lord over everything else in my childhood; they ensured that my siblings and I were exposed to the Word of God in every way possible. That meant we attended every church meeting, read the Bible together every day, and prayed together as a family. 

I was fully immersed in and surrounded by the truth from God’s Word from the time I was born, but it wasn’t my own. It didn’t matter to me. 

Occasionally I became concerned about my sin or, really, the fact that I would be in hell if I died because of it. But I always consoled or distracted myself somehow, convinced that I’d become a Christian some day.

The older I got, the more I was bothered by the fact that I wasn’t saved. But the older I got, the more stubborn I became. I told myself I could “figure it out.” I told myself that I just had to logicize and reason my way through the truth of the gospel and then, somehow, I’d come to an understanding of salvation. I convinced myself that I was in control of it all.

When I was 14, our church held a special series of nightly gospel preaching. It was some of the most powerful gospel preaching I’ve ever heard, and I can honestly say that I was concerned every single night. 

Then, things started happening and people around me started to get saved. First it was my sister, then my brother, then two boys the same age as me, then a few kids younger than me … but why wasn’t it happening to me? Maybe I’d never actually become a Christian! I was scared. 

One night after the gospel service I was especially upset. I talked to my sister and then to my dad, but nothing was helping; I felt so lost. One of the preachers came to our house to talk with my brother, and after a while, I decided to talk to him too. He didn’t say anything new, of course, but he gave some helpful illustrations and then left me with a list of verses on a sticky note. On the top he wrote, “What did Christ do for me in this verse?”

After he left, I spent the rest of the night reading that list of verses over and over. I went through the gospel story in my head. I cried. I read the verses some more. I cried again. A while later my brother came into the room looking for my parents and I immediately knew he’d been saved. I felt crushed. I gave up for the night and went to bed. 

The next day after school I started to work on my homework, but I could hardly focus. All of a sudden I stopped and thought to myself, If you don’t get this settled now, you’re never going to. I immediately went up to my room and got my Bible and the sticky note. With the question “What did Christ do for me in this verse?” running through my mind, I started to read through the list again. I came to the second verse, 1 Peter 2:24: 

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.”

It felt like everything else on the page disappeared except for the seven words in that second sentence: “By his wounds you have been healed.” That’s it! Jesus did the work. By His death—His wounds—I have been healed. 

It was in that moment that God revealed the gospel truth to me personally. I’d never seen it before because I’d been trying to figure it out on my own. But when I finally gave up all of my worthless effort, God revealed His Son to me. There was no hesitation, nothing to reason my way through, but a simple realization of a completed work. Jesus already died. He already paid for my sins. I am healed.

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