Skip to main content
Hands folded on a Bible

Heather grew up in an atheist household. But looking back, she can see how "God planted seeds" for her to find him one day. Or did God find her?

“I say ‘I found God,’ but I think it was him who really found me,” said Heather.*

Heather grew up in an atheist household, and she identified as an atheist for most of her life too. But looking back, she can see how “God had planted seeds”: moving right next to a Catholic high school she ended up attending; bumping into the same friend at university who would invite her to church; and being encouraged by mentors in the workplace who she later learned were faithful followers of Jesus.

But she never had any interest in Christianity—until she started graduate school at the University of Toronto, where your Resonate partner Graduate Christian Fellowship is located. It was a stressful time for her, she said. Classes moved entirely online in the midst of the Covid-19 lockdown. 

“I didn’t have any support,” she said. “It was a really lonely experience.”

She often found herself at her then-boyfriend’s house where she would study, spend time, and eat dinner with his family. His parents saw her struggles and started praying for her at the table.

“Their prayers brought a sense of peace that I had never felt before,” she said. “I wanted to know more.” 

And then one night, Heather broke down from the overwhelm of grad school.

“I think I know who you need,” her then-boyfriend said.

“Who?” Heather asked.

“I think you need Jesus.”

Pursuing Jesus

That night was a turning point, said Heather. While she believes God had pursued her throughout her life, after that night, Heather started fervently learning more about Christianity. She listened to well-known sermons, devoured books about faith, and started attending worship services at the church her friend had invited her to.

She also joined the community of Graduate Christianity Fellowship, a campus ministry that you support through Resonate.

God ignited a fire of hope in me. I wanted to know everything there is to know about him.

“God ignited a fire of hope in me,” said Heather. “I wanted to know everything there is to know about him.”

She started “praying fervently about every little thing” and reaching out to her friends who weren’t Christians and asking if she could pray for them. She was surprised when most of them said “yes.”

“There were friends who cried when I prayed for them. They were like, ‘This is so beautiful. No one has ever done this for me,’” shared Heather. “I didn’t really know what was going on. I just knew Jesus had brought something really beautiful into my life and I was going to try to hold onto it as much as I could.”

Connecting With Your Campus Minister

During this time, Heather also met your campus minister Brenda Kronemeijer-Heyink.

“Brenda was there for me at my lowest moments. She would always make time for me despite her calendar being full. She held my hand while I shared things I was too afraid to tell anyone up to that point. It was incredibly healing. Through her, I felt Christ’s love for me,” said Heather.

Heather continued to learn more about the gospel, and then one day, she had an experience she can’t quite explain: “I did have an encounter with God that left me in tears,” she said. “I just knew God was real and he was for me. It was very brief but very real.”

A Changed Life

Jesus changed Heather’s life.

It’s been more than three years since Heather decided to follow Christ. She said the gospel provides her with hope through the challenges and trials she continues to face. And your partner campus ministry is there for her. Last spring, Heather got baptized. And even after graduating, Heather continues to be a part of the Graduate Christian Fellowship community.

I deeply appreciate Heather’s passion and curiosity. It has been a joy and honor to walk alongside her as she grows in her understanding of what it looks like to follow God faithfully in all aspects of her life.

“I deeply appreciate Heather’s passion and curiosity,” shared Brenda. “It has been a joy and honor to walk alongside her as she grows in her understanding of what it looks like to follow God faithfully in all aspects of her life.”

Thank you for supporting campus ministries like Graduate Christian Fellowship through Resonate! Will you please pray for Heather as she continues to follow Jesus? Ask God to continue to provide for her, guide her, and encourage her.

*Name changed for privacy