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On Sunday we continued our series #goals: how to live a life that matters.  Jernigan preached on the belief that “found people find people.”  He used the story of Andrew’s encounter with Jesus to illustrate this belief.  As we were developing content for this message, we couldn’t help but think about Sarah and Mallory.  We can’t wait for you to read their story.  Found people really do find people.

Sarah: “I met Mallory in 2011 when we started working together. Little did I know how deeply our lives would be intersected the following year. In January 2012, my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer. I knew Mallory’s dad had been battling pancreatic cancer for just shy of two years at that point, so she understood what I was going through more than most could. In the infusion room of the cancer center off Green Hills Road, I got to spend time with Bob and Michelle (Mallory’s parents) while Bob and my mom received chemo together. It was a bittersweet time, but in that room, there was a quiet determination among the patients. The people there were fighting to live. I was lucky. God and the amazing oncologists there healed my mom, and she went into remission at the end of the year. And then, that spring, in March 2013, we got the news that Bob had succumbed to his cancer. It was hard, going to the funeral. My mom and I were afraid she would be a reminder of what could have been, but Mallory and Michelle were loving, gracious, and supportive of her remission. They commented on how much hair she had, and hugged us tightly.”

Mallory: “I was not raised going to church but was definitely raised with Christian values. Through my teenage years, I would attend church functions and youth groups with friends and even attended a church fairly regularly in college. However, I never felt that ‘at home’ feeling I longed for from a church family. When I lost my dad to cancer, I had less drive to even try to find that feeling. I turned inward to a point that became unhealthy.”

Sarah: “It was around this time I started attending a church in the Northland. I would (probably incessantly) invite Mallory to attend with me, but it never worked out. I could see the pain she felt, but wasn’t sure of a better way to encourage her. Unfortunately, after Mallory got a new job, we fell somewhat out of touch. We saw each other occasionally, but not nearly as frequently as we did when we worked closely together. I missed her so much!”

Mallory: “Sarah was always a positive, encouraging, and steadfast friend. Her tireless desire to improve the lives of all the people around her is such a beautiful character trait. For several years, she tried to get me to attend church with her. She knew church gave her something I needed. To say I was reluctant would be an understatement. I’m not certain what was different when she invited me to attend an interest party for Discover Church…the last interest party in fact.”

Sarah: “When I got plugged in with Discover last spring, I reached out to Mallory and invited her to attend an interest party at Main Event. I knew she was unsure, but she came. Over the next several weeks, I saw God enter her life. I know that she came to the right church at the right time for her – it was a beautiful thing that God orchestrated in His perfect timing.” 

Mallory: “It was a horrible day when nothing was going right, but I had agreed to go, so I did. It was the most important invitation I ever accepted, as in the months since that day, Discover Church and its message have challenged me, encouraged me, and changed me in ways I never imagined could happen. I am so blessed and grateful for Sarah’s friendship. Her light, love, and God-given gift to see truly people and care for them deeply are a blessing to all around her!”

Sarah: “Mallory has ALWAYS been such an incredible person to be around, and seeing the Holy Spirit working in her life makes me so glad I ‘pulled an Andrew.’ I know that God used me as an instrument to bring Mallory into the family she’s always been ready to be a part of.”