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My Testimony--Part 3--Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

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Faith's Firm Foundation: My Testimony--Part 3--Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Testimony--Part 3--Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Merry Christmas!

Here is Part 3 of "My Testimony."  Please go back to Part 1 and Part 2 first if you have not read them.  Thank you.

My purpose in sharing my testimony is to be obedient to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and to bring Him glory. I pray that the sharing of this testimony will not bring any pain or offense to any one, especially my family, whom I love dearly. These details of my life before I came to know Christ as my Lord and Savior are painful for me to relate, but I have tried to relate them as truthfully and lovingly as possible. I pray that the Lord will use my story to help others and cause them to love and trust Him, and perhaps save some from the painful consequences of sin which I've suffered. I'm so thankful to the Lord Jesus for saving me and I dedicate this testimony to Him.
As I stated earlier, I only began drinking after going to bars for many months. But now I was getting drunk often. I was going to bars alone, leaving when the bar closed at one o'clock in the morning. One night, very late, while driving home after a night of drinking and dancing, I fell asleep at the wheel of my car going 65 mph down the highway. I woke up to find the left wheels of my car up on the median and my car heading straight into the lights of the oncoming traffic. Somehow, miraculously, I was able to pull the car safely back into my own lane of traffic and continue on home without harm to myself or anyone else. Suddenly wide awake and sobered by the realization of what had just taken place, I drove home knowing, without a doubt, that God had saved my life.

If I hadn't believed there was a God before, I did now. Growing up, I knew about God and knew the facts surrounding salvation: that Jesus Christ was God’s Son and that He had died on the cross to save us from our sins. I knew that He had risen from the dead and that believing in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior was the only way to go to heaven, and escape punishment for your sins in hell. I knew that if you believed in Jesus, you were called a Christian. I thought I was a Christian. But I thought I could say, "Jesus, I believe all this and someday when I die, you’ll let me into your heaven, but right now I’m going to be in charge of my life and make my own decisions. You just go someplace and don’t bother me unless I think I need you and then I’ll call for you." I was not ready to let Him run my life.  I knew about Jesus as a Savior, but I knew nothing about Jesus as Lord.

When God saved my life that night that I fell asleep at the wheel, I was very grateful to Him.  I knew that He wanted me to change my life. There were a number of times when I had gotten drunk and behaved in a way that I wanted to forget. Now, drinking had almost killed me. I knew I had to do something.  I was a mess. So, right then and there, I decided to quit drinking, forever. And I did.  But, even though I was ready to change in this area, I wasn't ready to change anything else. God did not let me go, though.

As I continued in my search for someone who would love me forever and never leave me, I became more and more empty inside. I had a longing inside me that I couldn’t satisfy. I was going further and further down a road paved with the world's thinking. I would read books and listen to people who told me lies and I would believe them. I was so mixed up in my thinking and believing more and more of satan's lies.

Interspersed with guys from bars were legitimate boyfriends. One was quite serious. When, at the end of the summer, he broke up with me, I became very depressed. All through this time of searching, I thought that I was looking for a man:  some person who would promise to love me truly, forever and without leaving. Now, I was alone again. I didn't think there was any reason to go on without someone to love me. I would listen to sad songs on the record player in my apartment and cry for hours. What I didn't realize was that all this time the One I was searching for was Jesus Christ. He is the Only One Who can perfectly love you, knowing everything there is to know about you, and He is the Only One Who can promise His love forever and ever and fill your emptiness. He is the Only One Who will never die and never leave you.  But I still didn't get it.

When my boyfriend and I broke up, I really hit bottom emotionally. That was when God finally got through to me. One night about a year after my bar-hopping had begun, my family was all together at a restaurant celebrating my brother’s birthday. My brother, who was 7 years older than me, and I had become very close, but he scoffed at Christianity. He knew that I had professed Christianity in the past and he wanted nothing to do with it. During our conversation that evening, I mentioned something in passing, referring to, and using the words, “my Christianity.” Unbelievably, I still considered myself a Christian, and thought my family should see me in that context as well. But my brother's reaction took me totally by surprise. His response was like a slap in the face. He scoffed at me, “I thought you’d given that up!” I couldn't have felt his disgust more if he had spit at me. But, as I drove home alone that night, all I could think about was that my brother saw nothing in my life to indicate that I was a Christian. It was as if my brother had held up a mirror in front of me, and I was appalled at what I saw. For the first time I saw myself for who I really was: a filthy, rotten sinner, in need of a Saviour.

As I drove home that night, I cried out to God, tears streaming down my face, and said, “Lord, I’ve tried to run my life and I’ve made a mess of it! Please God, take over my life—I'm giving it to you; I want You to run it from now on.”

I had been sobbing so hard that I could barely see to drive, but instantly there was Someone there, a Presence filling my car.  I didn’t know exactly what had happened, but I felt an enormous peace come over me. Somehow, something had changed. I was changed. Jesus had come into my heart and taken control of my life and filled me with peace. I was filled with His Love and I wanted to burst with joy.  That moment began my new life with Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. I immediately had an insatiable desire to read the Bible, and I read every spare moment that I could.

I had found the One I was searching for all my life. The One True Love Who would love me forever and never leave. And my emptiness was filled. My life began to change. God brought a young Christian man into my life--no, he wasn't "the one," but he and the group of friends I met through him helped me immensely in my Christian life. In essence, they discipled me that first year. They showed me what it looked like to follow Christ, helped me establish Christian disciplines, and loved me--even though I was a very immature baby Christian, with a lot of baggage.

On that day that I accepted Jesus' payment for my sins on the cross, and based my righteousness and claim to heaven on His righteousness, death and resurrection, I surrendered control of my life to Jesus Christ, my Savior and Lord.  I thank God with all my heart for saving me that day, October 6, 1975, 34 years ago.

So, where are you in this story? Are you the one who drinks socially? Hardly ever, really. What if just one person is influenced to drink by your example, or becomes an alcoholic, or kills someone while driving drunk?  Or, perhaps you get drunk fairly often yourself.

Maybe you're searching like I was, for Someone to Love you.

Maybe you are trying to run your own life.  And maybe you're not doing such a good job of it.  Whoever you are: son, daughter, mother, father, please seriously consider these words. Please give your life to Jesus Christ right now. Whatever changes need to be made, He will help you. You don't have to fix yourself up first to come to Him. There is NOTHING you can do to save yourself.  He is your only hope of salvation and heaven.  He is in the business of changing lives. That is what this testimony is all about. If he can take someone like me and love me and forgive me, then He will fill you with peace and pour His love into your heart. Put your trust in Him and give Him control of every area of your life. Don't wait. You may not have tomorrow.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

"He is no fool who gives that which he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose."  Jim Elliot

Romans 10:9-11--"...if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."

If you are ready to believe in Jesus, and surrender control of your life to Him, please pray this prayer with me now:
"Dear Heavenly Father, please forgive me for my sin. I've turned my back on you, but now I want to give you my life. I believe that, Jesus, You are the Son of God and that You died on the cross for me--that You were punished for MY sins, and that God showed by raising You from the dead that He accepted that payment.  Thank you, Lord.  Please forgive me and come into my heart. Change me and help me, Dear Lord, in Jesus' Name and for His glory!

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Blogger Heather said...

That was a beautiful testimony, Wendy. Thank you for sharing that and for allowing yourself to be vunerable for the Lord. PTL He got through to you and your life is now FULL of good fruit.


December 24, 2009 at 6:57 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Hi Heather! Great to see you! Welcome! I was so glad to see your name here and then go and catch up on your family on your blog! Thank you so much for your encouraging words! I appreciate them a lot.
There're a lot of other resources here that are helpful--I hope that you get a chance to check them out. So fun to "see" you again!

December 24, 2009 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger Chase, Sarah, Coleton and Sarina said...

Thank you so much, Wendy, for sharing your testimony! I so enjoyed reading it, getting to know you better through it, and gleaning wisdom from the story God has given you. Thank you for being willing to be vulnerable and speak the truth, even when you know it's not always wanted. You are a godly example of a wife, mom, and daughter of Jesus to me! Love, Sarah

December 28, 2009 at 1:20 PM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Thanks, Sarah. Yes, it was a little hard to share this, but I pray that God will use it and bear fruit through it. It was so good to see you guys yesterday:)
Thanks so much for your kind words,
Mrs. G

December 28, 2009 at 1:33 PM  
Blogger Rhonda said...

Wendy we sat down as a family as Jennie read your testimony out loud to us all. Thank you for sharing from your heart and blessing our family with a wonderful discussion of how God works. God has used you in all of my young adult children's lives in many ways and I know reading this has given God the glory for your obedience and desire to obey Him! Thank you my friend for blessing our whole family!

December 30, 2009 at 7:42 PM  

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