As far back as I can remember, I had a very happy childhood with my parents and friends. My parents were a very strong influence in my life. They both loved the Lord.
As a young girl, I attended several different churches off and on. One summer when I was eight years old, I attended a neighborhood Bible club with my girlfriend. The teacher pressured us into praying a prayer, but I really did not understand at that time what it meant to be saved or to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
My name is Paula Williams, and this is my story. I grew up in Illinois. Our family attended the Lutheran Church for a few years, then stopped going to church altogether. When I was 12 years old, I was enrolled in LaSalle-Peru Christian School. This is where I heard about salvation. I knew that if I died without being saved, I would go to hell. I was so afraid of going to hell that one day I prayed and asked God to save me from hell.
When I was sixteen I was considered a “good girl.” I had attended the Presbyterian Church from the time I could walk; I was baptized as an infant, I was an active church member, I obeyed my parents and did well in school. And, just to make sure—I made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ. I viewed it as an insurance policy just in case “being good” wasn’t enough.
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