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Columnist talks faith at mayor’s prayer breakfast

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During a 9-year-old girl’s first candid conversation with God, she asked to be allowed into heaven, even though she wasn’t sure she deserved it.

Lori Borgman grew up believing God existed, but as she prayed one night before bed she started to wonder why God would let her into heaven.

Borgman, a syndicated newspaper columnist, author and speaker, shared the story of her faith Saturday at the 24th annual Greenwood Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast. Several hundred people including police officers, firefighters, school officials and business officials attended the event, which was sponsored by the Christian Business Men’s Connection.

They prayed for the leadership of Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers, for the city’s residents and workers and for the direction of the nation.

Borgman, the event’s main speaker, spoke to the crowd about how she began to ask difficult questions about God and faith at age 9, and how she’s tried to answer those questions throughout her life.

She remembers asking her mother why God would let her into heaven. Her mother read through the Ten Commandments with her and sent her back to bed, but that didn’t really answer her question. Borgman was still trying to figure out why a girl who was prone to sinning would be allowed into heaven, which she’d been told is perfect.

Finally, she tearfully told God that she didn’t deserve to go to heaven, but asked to be let in anyway. Borgman suddenly felt peace and was able to fall asleep.

During the next few years Borgman started to ask difficult questions of God as her family tried out different churches. At the time, events in the world, including the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy, left her wondering where God was, and if there was a plan behind what was happening.

Borgman had been skeptical about whether God actually loved her. But after speaking with a youth pastor and reading Bible verses about Christ dying for people’s sins, she became a Christian.

“This was clicking. I was part of the world; I was included,” she said.

Borgman’s commitment to Christianity brought her peace, but she didn’t always have easy answers to tough questions. She wondered why God allowed children to be born with birth defects and why sexual predators exist.

“I have wrestled with my faith and through my faith for years,” she said.

Part of Borgman’s search for answers to why bad things happen involved reading the story of Job, who lost his children, wealth and health but kept his faith. She took comfort when Job says that his redeemer lives. That verse confirmed for her that God is with her and her family, even when life doesn’t seem to make sense.

“Here’s a truth,” Borgman said. “God will take you just as you are. But He never leaves you just as you are.”

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