For 36 years of my life, I ran with the world and considered only myself. I had married young, at 18, and strayed further from God as the years went by. As my two children approached adulthood, I had complete control of my life and the things I would be able to do as an empty nester at the age of 38. Along the way, I encountered many Christians, including my own family who witnessed to me about Jesus Christ and what He had done for me on the cross. They would say that I had to be “born again” and make Jesus Lord and Savior of my life and start to live for Him. My reply to that was “that’s fine for you, but I don’t need Jesus in that way, my life is great just the way it is.â The thought of living for, and serving anyone but myself was not something I would even consider. I was raised in the Catholic Church and was comfortable with its traditions and doctrines of men. I thought that was good enough, that heaven would be guaranteed and there was nothing more I needed to do. I found my beliefs were wrong!
By the end of 1997 my world was falling apart and I was about to face the storm of my life. My wife of 18 years told me that she was leaving and wanted out of the marriage (much of this was my fault). All my plans, all my dreams, my best friend, everything my life consisted of was gone in a matter of days. It was only at that point that I realized that I had absolutely no control whatsoever over my own life. I was thrust into a downward spiral that took me right into the pit of hell. I was so embarrassed and ashamed that this could happen to me that I couldn’t admit it to anyone. I would leave work, go directly home, and lock myself into my house (which I was sure I was going to lose also). I spent the next 6 to 8 weeks in hell. I was a physical and emotional wreck. I couldn’t cope. I began to medicate myself with heavy doses of alcohol, but after a few weeks it lost its effect on me. I needed something more so I turned to marijuana for relief. It worked for a week or two and again lost its effect on me. Then I stepped it up to prescription drugs. For ten days the drugs only numbed what was raging beneath the surface. Every single hour of every single day fear and anxiety gripped me to the point of uncontrollable shaking, the inability to breath normally, a heart that felt like it was going to explode inside of me, and of course a constant flow of tears. Thoughts of suicide swirled inside my head. What I saw in the eyes of the man looking back at me from the mirror is beyond my vocabulary. A man completely broken, desperate, and humbled. At this point I was mentally, physically, and spiritually bankrupt!
It was 4:30pm on a Sunday afternoon. It was decision time and I knew it! The world had absolutely nothing left to offer me. I began to think of the God I had believed in as a little boy, and Jesus His son whom the Christians had talked about. It was only now that I was ready to drop to my knees and cry out to God;
“God if you are real and can hear me, SAVE MY LIFE – I want to die! If You can save me from my grief and despair and can bring me peace; I will give You everything in my life that’s not pleasing to You – take it all! Jesus, please forgive my sin and change my life. I fully accept what You did for me on the cross and I now give You control, and make You Lord of my life.”
I was expecting a “white light” experience but didn’t receive one. I went to my bedroom wondering if what I had just done was real. I opened a New Testament bible that just happened to be within eyesight, and began reading out loud. I drifted into the deepest most peaceful sleep I had known since this nightmare began. With the next day came some of the same old fears and anxieties. I began to doubt again. Was the night before a fluke? I went home that evening and tried the same method. Again I slept as the night before. Night after night God proved His love for me. As I began to realize the presence of the Spirit of God in my life, I couldn’t get enough!
I continued to seek His presence day after day, hour after hour.
Psalm 40:1-3 I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps. He has put a new song in my mouth – Praise to our God; many will see it and fear, and will trust in the Lord .
A transformation began to take place on the inside of me that is beyond explanation. Jesus Christ was in the process of transforming my life! The exact thing I had asked Him to do. He was giving me a peace and joy that I had never known before. For the first time in my life I have a reason to live. Take my word for it; there is nothing in this world that is worth living for. Everything in the world can and will be at some point taken away from you. That is a fact. I spent 36 years running away from that truth, buying the lie that what I have here is all there is to life. I’ve lived on both sides of the ultimate Truth. There is no comparison – I will follow Christ!
Little did I know He had been there my entire life, patiently waiting for me. You see, Jesus Christ is a gentleman. He never goes where He is not invited. He will never force Himself on anyone. It is our own free will that He has so graciously given us that will determine our eternal destiny. I didn’t and couldn’t enjoy His presence or the salvation He brings until I humbled myself before a righteous, holy God, repented of my sinful ways, and put my faith and trust in Christ alone.
Godâs word says, âAll have sinned and fall short of the glory of Godâ â Romans 3:23.
He also says the consequences of that sin is eternal death, âthe wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lordâ â Romans 6:23.
His word then tells us how to be saved from a lost eternity without hope; âthat if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvationâ â Romans 10:9-10.
I am a living, walking testimony that Jesus Christ is alive and on the throne today. If you haven’t yet done so, I pray that you will repent of your sin and put your faith and trust in Him alone. It is the single most important decision you will ever make in your life. This decision will determine where you will spend eternity.
If youâre not sure where you will spend eternity, there is someone who is waiting to talk to you and will help answer any questions you may have.
Please call toll free: 1-888-NeedHim
God Bless You,