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  • Give your testimony here

    How did the Lord bring you to Himself? Would love to hear your story of salvation.

    Edit to add: Any testimony about how the Lord has worked, that the Lord puts on your heart to share here, please share it here.

    God bless!
    Last edited by Brother Mark; Jan 18th 2020, 01:46 PM.
    Matt 9:13
    13 "But go and learn what this means: ' I DESIRE COMPASSION,AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
    NASU

  • #2
    I reckon I'll start then. Would love to hear from the rest of y'all. Testimonies are soooo encouraging to the body!

    I had been saved about 6 months or so. Having grown up in a very legalistic church system, my view of God was simply horrible! Somehow, I knew in my heart God wanted me to go to this big Southern Baptist church in town. Don't ask me how I knew because I can't answer that question. I just knew. When I went to the pastor of the church I was attending to tell him the Lord was moving me, he smiled, hugged my neck and said "I wondered what was taking you so long." I never forgot that moment of grace. That pastor was far more concerned about my soul and my spiritual well being than he was in building his own kingdom. It impacted me and still does impact me. But that's another story.

    After starting at this new church, many things happened. But one of the first was they invited me to a men's retreat. A pastor by the name of Peter Lord was leading it. I agreed to go and had no idea what God had in store for me. Now, at this time, I was barely saved and had very little power over sin. I only had hope, for the first time in my life, that God was going to change me. Little did I know!!!! Of course, He had already changed me a great deal but I didn't even understand that. Anyway....

    Brother Lord spoke on many things that weekend. There are two in particular that I remember. One was hearing God and the other was forgiveness. I think this was all the way back in 1991 or there abouts. I was a KJV only proponent at the time and filled, I mean just FULL of two horrible and damaging things. I was full of religion/condemnation and lust. Well, brother Lord begins preaching on Friday afternoon or Friday night. I can't remember. What I do remember is going all day Saturday too. Sometime on Saturday, brother Lord began speaking about hearing God. I thought it was the absolute hokiest thing I had ever heard in my life. We were all sitting at fold out tables throughout the huge room (or auditorium if you prefer). It wasn't a church but rather some kind of campground with a huge room available for meetings. (This was on the coast of Mississippi.) Brother Lord did a little teaching, then told us to ask God what He thought of us. I was stunned! Again, I thought this was the hokiest thing I had ever heard in my life. My next thought was, "If God wanted to speak to me, He would speak to me through the King James Bible." My final thought was "I do NOT want to know what a holy God thinks of me." Now keep in mind, I was not only full of religion, but lust. And I mean absolutely full of it! I hated it of course, but didn't know what to do about it. It was also a source of very great shame to me.

    Now, back to the question... with all this going on inside of me, such as condemnation from my legalistic, judgmental thinking (i.e. what I would now call a religious spirit), along with great bondage to lust, you can imagine me not wanting to know what God thought of me. For some reason, and I have no idea why did it, I gave it a try. I bowed my head and asked God "What do you think of me?" Immediately, the scripture came to mind "This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased." I rejected it out of hand. I told God "You said that in the bible concerning your Son Jesus. I know He pleased You because He was perfect and without sin." (Oh the performance mentality and righteousness based on works in those words of mine.) Then I asked this: "Lord, if that was You speaking about me, then please give me confirmation that it was You." Immediately, a 2nd verse came to mind "And as many as received Him, to them gave He the power to become the sons of God."

    For the first time in my life, I knew I was accepted by God and approved by Him. I had some bible in my head, but really had no grasp of what it meant. But this day, this glorious day, the Lord showed me I was accepted by Him! I was stunned. I was amazed. He was pleased with me. He approved of me. How could this be???? I was overjoyed! There were other things God dealt with me about that weekend, but this was one of the biggest. And later that evening or maybe it was the next day, I cannot remember, me and 5 other men were sitting around our table. While sitting there, God spoke to me and said "Tell them about what you are doing secretly." Because of what God had already shared with me about how He saw me, I was able to do this. So I just blurted it out. I told them all what I had been doing secretly and how I had been sinning lustfully. Two things happened that surprised. Each of them also had a struggle with this sin though not to the level of my great sin. So we all agreed to meet once a week to pray over this and confess to each other and work towards victory. The other thing that happened was I was free! God had zapped it. (To my great shame I rebuilt this later and paid a price. But that's another testimony.)

    To this day, I remember getting in the back seat of a car, and my Sunday School teacher, who had heard everything was in the front seat. He acted like he always had around me, with mercy, grace and compassion, without ever winking at sin. What stunned me was he treated me no differently after hearing my confession than he did before. I remember thinking "If he is this merciful, how merciful must God be!"

    I was never the same after that. Through the years, I have learned far more from my failures than I have from my victories. Though in this case, victory was a great teacher. Only later did I come to realize that what pleased God was I trusted in His Son. I didn't justify my sin before Him. Even now, what amazes me, is that the Lord first dealt with my performance mentatlity, and my condemnation, my righteousness comes from works thinking before ever dealing with what I considered my greater sin. Now I know, that the greater sin was what God dealt with first, my own judgment of myself. But that's another testimony too. And the Lord dealt with that sin the same weekend in detail later, but the first blow, was recognizing how He saw me and what I meant to Him. That carried more weight than what I thought of myself.

    All of my shame left me after that confession. For the first few years of my walk with the Lord, confession no longer scared me. Knowing I was accepted by Him went a long way. Even in my failures, I was not shamed to admit it to others. That changed over the years as I supposedly "matured". But man, that was just the enemy creeping back in. Rather than going on and on, I'll end here.

    So... what has the Lord done for you? I am sure we all have many, many encouraging stories and testimonies to share! I hope you will write them hear for us all to enjoy.

    God bless,

    Mark
    Matt 9:13
    13 "But go and learn what this means: ' I DESIRE COMPASSION,AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
    NASU

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for sharing that. You'll never know how many can identify with that, including myself, largely because God does not always require that we take the skeletons out of our closet and expose ourselves to ridicule and contempt. But it's very brave of you, and it does help those who've gone through this kind of thing.

      My own Salvation is unique in some crowds, but perhaps not in others. I was raised up in church, and was taught to pray at every meal and at night before going to sleep. We were taught the live out the 10 Commandments. This I did, faithfully, as an acolyte and as "every week" church-attending family until I went through early adolescence. At that time I felt I was "square" and being treated as a weirdo at school. I felt I was slowly being marginalized and misrepresented as "uncool" and some kind of moral "drone."

      The result was that I began to fraternize with those who lived unChristian, pagan lives. At the same time I continued to attend church, pray, and go through catechism in my denomination. My mother was concerned, as I slipped into criminality and sin, but our church was weak, as a denomination, and incapable, among its leadership, to help her. We were becoming very liberal and tolerant in our beliefs.

      I felt, like you, tremendous condemnation, and could not figure out what problem God had with my sin? What actually determines something is wrong with "lust?" Why is sleeping with your girlfriend sin? Isn't "love" the basis of righteousness? If you "love" your girlfriend, how can sleeping with her be sin?

      Anyway, I continued to descend into the abyss of sin and criminality until I ended up in juvenile detention for possessing drugs for sale. I was 16 at the time, and this was back in 1970. While in the detention facility I at first seemed to express indifference to God and to my sin. But I had a profound sense that God "left me" as I posed a defiant attitude. I had not realized how God had been with me all of my life, and now felt desolate with the sense that God had left me! He had even seemed to be with me in all of my questioning, sin, and criminality.

      But now, with an attitude of defiance, and at the moment of punishment, God showed me that He was losing patience with me. And I missed Him terribly, and begged Him to come back! Over time the sense of His presence returned. It took me perhaps half a year to quit all that I was doing, because I thought I could still fraternize with pagans and avoid sin. At Christmas time I was at a drinking party and felt alone and different from everybody else. But the parents of the house were, I think, Christians. And I was mesmerized by a picture of Jesus praying to his Father on the wall. I meditated on my lack of ability to quit all the drugs and drinking and sin, when it occurred to me that God wanted me to fully devote myself to Him...all the time! God wanted my all!

      I got up and told my best friend, at the time, that I was giving my life to Jesus. I've had struggles and lots of suffering through the years. But I've seen amazing things, as well. God bless, and thanks for sharing your testimony. You're right--testimonies are encouraging!

      Comment


      • #4
        My testimony of repentance. Part 1

        I was very young and because of my parents who were alcoholics, I stayed in an old age home because there was no orphanage we could accommodate as brothers. I was still young and played with a cup pin. How I got this pin I don't know. As I play with the spell, it slides out of my hand, into the grass. The thought comes to me, that I should ask God, that He should make the pin visible to me. Why this thought came to me is also inexplicable. But the thought was there, and I ask God for the pin. I looked down and immediately saw the pin and picked it up. But, a thought overwhelmed me, that is: throw away the pin and ask God to make the pin visible. I discard the pin and ask God to make the pin visible again. But this time my request was denied. I did not find the pin again and immediately became furious and cursed. This experience was the first encounter with the Godhead that I did not understand in my childhood. I have experienced the awareness of the Deity that God exists and is a reality. With this spiritual experience, I spent my years and never doubted the existence of God. Although I did not know or read the Bible, the awareness of the Deity was present because of the experience I had.

        With this thought, I grew up and at times tried to please God through good works. I wanted to please God, in the carnal way, not in truth. Because I grew up in a state church, I always tried to turn the new page. So, we were taught; scroll the new page from the front. No sin confession was needed.

        My school career was over and I was called up for service with the Navy. During this time, I met a girl I loved very much. The sinful way of life did not bother me at all. After duty, I start visiting my grandmother for the first time. My grandmother tells me the gospel of Jesus. I have felt at work at times that I have a great need for something I do not understand. By grace, God sends an apostate Christian along my way. I ask him about the things of life, but he has no answer. He makes a suggestion and tells us to go to church sinfully. I agree, while excited about the presentation. Sunday comes and he announces that we are attending the evening service. On Sunday night he shows up and takes me to Pentecostal Church. We sat down at the gallery because I am ashamed of the Christians for all the sin in my life. The preacher brought a powerful Holy Spirit gospel message. While he was preaching, I couldn't stop the tears because I knew my search was coming to an end. The preacher made an invitation and stated that if anyone needed Christ as Savior, he should enter the prayer room for prayer. I immediately with tears and all, got up and ran into the prayer room inside. I wanted to experience the fulfillment of my life with all my might. In the prayer room, I wept bitterly to God and through, gained my ignorance of forgiveness of sin. As I called to the Lord, I had a vision of Jesus wearing the thorn crown. Today I realize it was a face that encouraged me so I could understand what He was doing for me. After service, we drove back to my grandmother's house. I tell my grandmother: I have turned to God. My grandmother tells me: You must be baptized. I tell my grandmother: I know I need to be baptized, even though I didn't know where it was in the Bible.

        This is my first love I found when I was 21 years old. Will later testify how I was also bound by lust and lost my first love.

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