How do you know God is real?

"How do I know God is real? When I look back on the experiences of my life I can say that I know without a doubt that God is real. From a young age I was taught about God, learned what His ways were, and what we are 'supposed' to do to be like Him. It wasn’t until a cancer diagnosis for my young son that my true relationship with God began. During this journey I learned how to pray and I fully opened my heart to God. Little did I know He already knew me and my heart. Although all of my prayers were not answered in my timing, looking back I knew it was not my timing that was perfect but His. Since then, I have seen God work in my life in mighty ways. He prepared me for another child who was born with a congenital heart defect and would need open heart surgery, and I was not fearful or worried because I knew that He is faithful. I see God in my life daily and I know that He is real with the joy heard in a child’s laughter, the relief with a clear doctor’s appointment; I know He is real when my anxiety is heightened, my hurt is almost unbearable and a calm comes over me; when a friend calls or writes randomly with a prayer for me, with the beauty of the calm; I know He is real because of the grace and mercy I have received because He died for me." 

-Valerie