Hello, my name is Caleb Bradshaw. I live in Littleton with my Mom and Dad, along with my five siblings: Stephanie, Micah, Anna, Mubeshire, and Bona.
I was born into a Christian family, and I have been a Christian as long as I can remember. I grew up going to Immanuel, and that is where I began to learn about what it means to be a Christian. Through Immanuel, I learned almost every Bible story there is to know, and memorized copious amounts of scripture. Additionally, I was homeschooled from first grade until I re-entered the public school system my freshman year of high school. When homeschooling, my mother would often use Christian curriculum, further reinforcing the lessons I had learned through church. Along with homeschooling and church, my family and I go to a Christian family camp in New Hampshire every year. While there, what I had learned from my friends and family was reinforced and demonstrated first hand through the staff working at that camp.
While growing up, my entire life was in or around the church, and most of my friends were Christians I had met through the church. Despite being brought up in the church, I didn’t take Christianity seriously, and I didn’t have a visualization of what life without Christ was really like. All of that changed after I had gone on my first missions trip to Hartford Connecticut through a program call The Hartford Project. While on this trip, I saw first hand examples of what life could be like without Christ, and how much joy Christ brings to our lives. I also saw and heard of how God worked through those of us on that missions trip. Whether it just be praying, or hearing of how God healed, my faith was reaffirmed throughout the five years I had gone on that trip. Watching those without Christ struggle and give in to the temptations from the world calls to mind Revelations 21:4, which says: “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (NIV). This verse serves as a reminder for me that even when things get tough, God will make all the pain and suffering disappear.
Shortly after planting this church, I began serving on the worship team, giving back to God with the gifts he has blessed me with. At times I may not always want to answer God, or serve where he calls me to serve, but in the end, I know His ways are above our ways. Throughout my life, through various encounters, whether they be Christian or secular, I discovered for myself my need for a savior, and that despite my belief, I need to continuously repent of my sins. That is why I’m here before you today. To publicly affirm my belief in that savior, Jesus.
In closing, I would like to share these scriptures that I have found meaningful whenever I’m doubting God: Luke 12:8-9 – “And I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angles of God” (NIV). and Romans 8:31b – If God is for us, who can be against us?” (NIV).
If you have questions, I would be happy to answer them after the service.