John’s Testimony: Breaking Captives Free
I grew up in church like many others. I learned to memorize and be familiar with the teachings of the Bible from an early age. I am thankful for my upbringing. I was taught the fundamentals of the Christian faith. My early years were a great foundation that I could later draw from to serve the Lord.
Faith in Jesus came into my life early when I was introduced to the Bible. God’s truths were familiar to me but I did not learn how to fully apply them at that time. The full reality of God had not yet been exposed to me. Surrender to God’s full control over my life came at a much later date.
Instead of God’s Way, I Eventually Chose My Own
In my young adulthood, I understood God was very important in life. I went to a Christian college, attempting to get a good start for the rest of my life. In some way, I always wanted to do what was right. The problem was simple: I put myself in charge of what direction my life would go. I also would fight on my own to stay on the “right path.”
As many others, false beliefs and sins had come into my life even growing up in church. I did not understand that my “own way” was flawed. I also did not understand how to apply many of the truths of the Bible to the entirety of my life. The Bible disapproves of exactly what I was doing at that time: I did whatever was “right in my own eyes.” God had very little to do with what direction my life was going.
My Own Way Caused Failure and Disappointment
After a period of time, my ways caught up with me. My life became in shambles. My first marriage fell apart because I was completely unable to address the entrenched spiritual problems that I and my wife faced. After the divorce, I found myself being meanest to the people I loved the most. It was not a good time in my life. I eventually had enough of myself. I feared God and knew I had to turn to him for help.
Praying differently this time, I turned to the Lord for help. I was incapable of doing anything good on my own or even going in the right direction at all. God himself would have to help me. I was completely broken down and fed up with my own ways. I asked God to send people to help me. I asked God to help me Himself.
After Surrendering to God, My Life Changed Quickly!
My life immediately began to change. Many new Christians came into my life after praying. These Christians helped me apply the Word of God into my life. My relationship with God quickly deepened. Everything became new and very much different. The Holy Spirit became very powerful and evident in my life. I was thrilled and honored that God had helped me. Now He was allowing me to serve Him. I decided I would do things God’s way for the rest of my life.
Eventually I met Natalie, my wife. At first we were not interested in each other. She ended up working for me for four months back then at my office. My friends and I were telling her about Jesus. She saw firsthand how we lived out our faith. Later, after she stopped working for me, Natalie accepted Jesus. Natalie’s life changed dramatically. The rest is history! We are now married and work in this and other ministries together. Praise Jesus for how he can mend broken lives! Praise Jesus for using us to help others grow in truth!
Some of us need to be broken down completely to allow the Lord to build us up. God can transform our personal failures into God’s victories. Perhaps my testimony is for those who have been exposed to Christianity for quite some time. Some of us have high exposure to Christianity but cannot live a victorious Christian life. Allow the Lord break you down fully. Realize that you may know nothing at all when it really comes down to applying Jesus’ teachings. Let the Lord Himself build up your faith. Allow God to build a whole new life for you!