My Brave Story- Catie Kershner

Being vulnerable is the first step in letting God use our testimony. In this vulnerability, we most likely show how imperfect we are...but you know what, it sets the stage for us to show good our Jesus is! I love Catie's story because even though she's been very blessed in life, she still has her pitfalls and where she's felt like she's failed. They may not seem like big failures to some people, but she was falling short of what God had for her. Through being real with herself she realized that she needed a Savior. When this happened she could truly step into the abundant life that God had for her. I challenge you to read her story and take a look at your own life. Not in shame or to feel guilt, that's what the devil wants to point out, but ask Holy Spirit to show you what you need to lay down in order to go further with God.

So here it is! It's an honor to introduce you to Catie Kershner and make sure to follow this talented girl on Instagram at @kershnercustomsilver.

Entrepreneur, ranchers' daughter, cheetah-loving silversmith, dog mom to Bruce.

I'm Catie Kershner, owner, creator, one gal show that is Kershner Custom Silver. My dog Bruce is my right hand man and #1 shop assistant. He's really the star of my whole business and if you've met him you know why! He's constantly stealing hearts and kissing babies!!

 Catie and her main man, Bruce!

Catie and her main man, Bruce!

My home base is in southeastern Oregon in the tiny town of Jordan Valley, home of the Big Loop Rodeo. I work full time in the Treasure Valley for Natural Resource Conservation Service during the week and on the weekends I do my silver business as well as ranch with my family.  

 The epitomy of "ranch girl."

The epitomy of "ranch girl."

We raise beef cattle right there in JV, and much to my father's disapproval, goats!  Agriculture and ranching roots run deep and are big influences in my business as well as everyday life.

 Catie and her mom at the Jordan Valley Big Loop in 2015.

Catie and her mom at the Jordan Valley Big Loop in 2015.

I’m not lucky, you have no idea how much I’ve prayed.

When I was asked to write for the Brave Series, fear popped up. The devil’s voice saying, "what will you even say? You don’t have this tremendous story!" I am just an average person this is true, but God made me in his image! I am the daughter of a King! I wasn’t sure what I was going to say, but I started jotting some notes down while waiting for my pickup to be serviced and pretty soon I had three pages of thoughts, ideas, my story of Christ in me.

I’ve often heard how blessed and lucky I am, and there’s no denying it! God has certainly been more than plentiful on the blessings that I have received! But what people don’t often contribute to my “luck” is the gift of Jesus. God gave his only son to save ME from MY sins! And He gave Jesus for you too! It’s a continuous journey for me of furthering my relationship with the Lord and it always hasn’t been a bed of roses, but it all started with on single prayer. 

“Lord I need you more than ever.”

I’ve always considered myself a believer of Christ. I’d attend church, read the occasional devotional, and say my duty prayers, yet I’d never really committed my life to the Lord. I relate my personal journey with the Apostle Peter. In Matthew 26:4, Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.

I am worthy! We are all worthy! There is nothing we can do to separate us from the love that God has for us.

Now no one ever has any intentions of denying Christ, but I found myself denying Christ many times. I’ve had my struggles with standing strong in and showing my faith. Similar to Peter, when questioned about or in certain company, my faith would diminish. I would deny Him. Whether out of guilt, I don’t deserve His love. Look at my list of sins. I’m not “Christian” enough. Or out of shame (I know! UGH!), I’ll be mocked for my relationship with Christ. It’s not “cool” to talk about God. All of these excuses were the devil getting into my head saying I wasn’t worthy. But you know what? I am worthy! We are all worthy! There is nothing we can do to separate us from the love that God has for us.

 This dog is cool.

This dog is cool.

That single prayer of “Lord I need you,” started a revolution in my life. It’s really your typical story of multiple heartbreaks that brought me back to God. I had been denying Christ off and on for several years. I would still be praying off and on, but I had been devoting my time to people who didn’t believe, so I kept my beliefs quiet.

When the turmoil of those relationships was finally catching up to me, I knew I needed Christ in my life more than ever. I began to pray to God for guidance as to what He wanted for my life. In his timing, God started opening doors and as much as I hated to see it, closing others.

Initially I was filled with fear. Fear of giving up control (hello, control freak here!) I was fearful of the decisions He would make in my life. What if I didn’t like them? Umm Cate, you don’t like the decisions YOU’RE making in your life! Give the King of Kings a chance! He can give you blessings beyond your wildest dreams if you let him!

 Catie in her booth at the Bruneau Cowboy Christmas in 2016.

Catie in her booth at the Bruneau Cowboy Christmas in 2016.

It is so hard in today’s society to speak out about Christ and having a relationship with Him. One thing I have found through sharing my faith on social media especially, is there’s a lot more women with a deep rooted faith in God out there and that is so comforting! Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30

This year truly has been a period of great transformation for me. Through my relationship with God, I found strength, will-power, and a voice I never knew I had. I made the decision to fully submit my life to Christ because I was tired of the heartbreak, guilt, and fear that was coming out of my own decisions that weren’t rooted in Christ.

It has finally given me peace when I think about all the uncertainty of my future, knowing God has it all planned out.  For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."  Jeremiah 29:11. I don’t need to worry about finding the perfect husband, stressing about making my business successful, if it is God’s will it will be done! All I have to do is pray. Pray without ceasing! Because of my faith and willingness to follow God’s plan for me, He will fulfill my heart’s greatest desires (and then some!). With his promises I will patiently wait!

If my following God’s path for my life doesn’t mesh up with society’s vision of what a young, single woman’s life should look like, well then, I guess I’ve never been one who just goes with the flow anyways.

Though I fall short of the glory of God every single day, I know that I am forgiven and loved. I will still continue to walk the path he has for me, even if it is an old cow trail through beautiful Jordan Valley! And if my following God’s path for my life doesn’t mesh up with society’s vision of what a young, single woman’s life should look like, well then, I guess I’ve never been one who just goes with the flow anyways.