Monday, February 21, 2011

In Her Own Words, Keme Carter

I hope you were able to hear Keme Carter's testimony on Sunday...but if not, you're at the right blog! For those of you who did hear her, I'm sure you'll agree with me that Keme is one transparent women. I'm personally proud of her for being so open and honest about her life...something that I wish more women were like. As an incredibly respected woman at our church, I found it to be refreshing that she is just like you and me: she once was lost but now is found; was blind but now can see. 

Here is  Keme's story  in her own words:
"As a person who grew up in the south, the bible belt of the United States, one would have thought that during my childhood and adolescence I would have heard the good news of Jesus Christ many times, and understood why I needed a savior.  I had wonderful, loving parents who stressed the importance of integrity, discipline, hard work, and education, and who took us to church infrequently for the purpose of developing high moral standards. As a young adult, I actually considered myself to be a Christian- and as far as I knew, everyone in the south was a Christian. For the most part, my friends who also considered themselves to be Christians had lives that at least superficially looked no different from mine.

After high school, I headed to Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, and having a Type A personality, I had an agenda. That agenda, in a nutshell, consisted of having fun, but not too much fun, doing well academically, and heading on to medical school after graduation. But then I met a boy, his name was Jamail, and he would become my husband. I thought Jamail was fantastic- he was smart, funny, an athlete on the football team, loved his parents, and for the life of me, I couldn’t understand why no one else could see that Jamail could single-handedly turn our football program around. Jamail and I, when we started dating, engaged in sexual immorality. Like me, he was not walking with the Lord, but unlike me, Jamail always had an intense feeling of guilt immediately afterward and would voice his concern about not knowing if he would go to Heaven or Hell should he die. At that point in my life, I could never have predicted the degree of hurt and regret that I would carry with me, even into our marriage, as a result of that sexual sin.

Jamail found a mentor in the chaplain of the football team and became saved. It was quite clear that his heart had changed and that he would not and could not have a relationship with me as a nonbeliever. He was more concerned about my salvation than our relationship and he found Godly women who could explain the gospel to me. I recognized husband material when I saw it, and was more concerned about my relationship than anything else, and so I listened to the gospel. What I came to understand as a 19 year old woman, was that I was dead in my sin, that my sin would have devastating repercussions, and I could be saved only one way, and that was through Jesus Christ. It would take some time before I could begin to comprehend the love, holiness, and providence of God, and allow myself to be truly cleansed by Him.

My last year of college was one of spiritual growth as I was attending a bible study regularly, had other Christian women holding me accountable, and Jamail who would consistently challenge me to learn more about God’s word. But after graduation, I moved to another city where I attended medical school and I entered some of the most spiritually stagnant years of my life. Looking back, it is clear why- again I had my own agenda. My most important priority became doing well in medical school and maintaining a long distance relationship with Jamail so that at the beginning of my 3rd year we would become engaged. I didn’t look for a church home, didn’t seek out or pray for a spiritually mature woman who could disciple me, and didn’t find time to read God’s word. Jamail, during this time, was continuing to grow spiritually and walk faithfully with the Lord and found a pastor to be his spiritual shepherd. Jamail also during this time had told me that he would not necessarily adhere to my time line of becoming engaged. God was preparing him to be a Godly husband, he told me, and this process was on God’s time line. 

One day, I walked into the office of one of my attendings to ask for a recommendation. At the end of our meeting, he invited me to his church and told me that he would like to introduce me to his wife. The Lord sent his wife, Janice, and the wife of Jamail’s pastor to get me back on track. They modeled for me true Christian wives and mothers. They challenged my definition of purity. No, purity did not just mean abstaining from sex, but actually being able to present my body as a living sacrifice to God, avoiding temptation and lust, and having a pure heart. I then understood that if I could not truly, consistently, and unconditionally love a perfect man, Jesus Christ, then how could I love and be the wife God wanted me to be to an imperfect one? I realize now that I have a tendency to form idols in my life- they were Jamail, my education, and later, my children. But it’s different now because I have a husband who leads me, a church that grows me, a small group that prays for me, and Christian women around me who understand my weaknesses and aren’t afraid to speak the truth like, “you are first a child of God, then your husband’s helper, then a mother, and lastly a doctor.”   

I praise God, that in His mercy and love, He always lovingly, albeit sometimes painfully, refocuses me on what is most important…a Christ centered life and an open and honest relationship with Him. Because if this is maintained, the rest of my life will be in order, and I don’t have to have my own agenda."

Thank you Keme, for your boldness to share how God has shaped your life. You're an example of the true woman that Susan Hunt describes in her book (The True Woman): "Her redeemed character is shaped and driven by God's Word and Spirit. Because she is the very dwelling place of the Lord God, her reflection of Him is manifested in every relationship and circumstance of life." Now if you'll excuse me, I'm so inspired to reflect this as well that I'm off to spend some time with the Lord!
If you were encouraged by Keme, please say so! Post a comment blow!

With love,


  1. I was in the nursery duirng yesterday's service, so I missed this excellent testimony, but I am thrilled to see it here! I am so impressed with your candor, Keme; how brave! It's so encouraging to hear that other women are facing the same kinds of hurdles in their relationship to Chirst as I am. Thank you!

  2. Ladies, thank you for the comments. Simone, I really don't think it was a coincidence that I saw you at Yolk that morning and you asked me about my testimony. Up until that point, I was so terrified about giving my testimony that I hadn't even begun writing it. I went home and wrote most of it that evening. One thing I learned from Mary through this process is that we should tell our stories often. It's extremely hard being so vulnerable, but it's all for God's glory!!

  3. Keme! I mean it -- you were so inspirational. It was your realness that stuck out to me the most. Writing out your story can be so therapeutic! I just had to do a short version myself for a different project and truly learned some new things about myself. I think I'm going to share it on the blog and encourage others to do the same. Praise God that He has a story for each and everyone of us!(and for the courage to share it!)

  4. Thank you Keme for your honesty. I love your definition of being pure. Also, I was reminded of my priorities as a woman. Very true and very moving.