And he said
Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
I have to say that it was the testimony of Christian people that drew me to the point where I met with Jesus and repented of my sins. It was testimony that encouraged me, knowing that others had faced the same things that I had, and were able to still trust in the Lord in spite of the obstacles. After a lot of consideration, I thought I'd just post this, my own testimony, here for your consideration.Dave Higson (Site Admin) - The face behind the words.
...back in the late 1960's, I walked out of the church. I felt that, at 13 years of age, I knew it all and that the church I'd attended with my parents was full of hypocrites. I'd absorbed enough Bible teaching in Sunday School to know a hypocrite when I saw one and the church that I attended was full to the brim with them. I figured that if God couldn't keep His own house in order, what chance had he with the rest of the world? I left the church, much to my parents grief. I told them the reasons and said that I'd follow my own journey. Surely, there was more than one road to God? However,
let me go...
... in fact, He pursued me vigorously for six years. Everywhere I turned, I was either presented with a Gospel tract or witnessed to by other Christians. One of my teachers even got in on the act. He'd been saved during the "Bolton Jesus Festival" and was keen to share this great news with anyone who would listen. My cousin had strengthened her faith and some friends had been saved in the revival that is sometimes now referred to as the "Jesus Revolution." The mid to late 70's was a time of open air "Jesus Festivals" and coffee bars. In my self-righteous state, I was critical of these things. Why was God resorting to cheap tricks to let people know the Gospel?
I began to think...
... if God couldn't keep the church from hypocrisy and was resorting to cheap tricks in order to attract my attention, maybe other religions had the answer. After all, I reasoned that humans are spiritual beings - maybe someone else's god could answer the questions about why the world was in such a mess. Famine and war was everywhere and Britain was trying to keep the peace between Protestant and Catholic factions in Northern Ireland. I tried Taoism for a while but found an emptiness clad in fine words. I was also attracted to Mormonism at one stage as they seemed to stand for a decency and morality that was missing in society.
... my cousin invited me to a weekend camp, organised by the local Baptist church. As I was an outdoors kind of guy, I jumped at the chance to stay under canvas for a short break. The folk on the camp were mostly around my own age and I began to see that there were people in the church who had met with the same questions as me and had found them answered, not in a philosophy or a set of rules and practices, but in a person...the person of Jesus. Until that point, His very name had been an embarrassment to me. I'd even been ashamed to mention it out loud in conversation. I realised, as I sat by the river that ran by the camp that I was desparately sinful. I'd been running from God and finally, He'd caught me, quite literally, on the bank of the running waters of Malham Tarn. I figured I could carry on running but, in truth, I was concerned about chasing down the very broad but very wrong path that leads only to destruction. I began to realise the consequences of my actions. I repented there and then and, trusted in Him and Him alone for my salvation and promised that I'd serve Him in the time to come.
The doubts came flooding in...
.., and not just mine. Even my mother expressed her doubt in my conversion by saying that she knew all about my faddishness. I'd been all kinds of things in the past and this trendy "Christianity" was just another one to add to the list. She hoped it would stick but she somehow doubted it. In answer to Mum's concern, here I am, over thirty years later, still following the longest "fad" in my life.
I let the Lord lead me...
... into all kinds of situations. As time passed, I became a youth leader, a Sunday School teacher, a house group leader, a preacher, a husband, a father (three times!) a counsellor, a web site editor and an evangelist.
My greatest desire...
... is to see and hear the Lord's saving Word preached to those who are waiting to hear it, even if they don't yet know they are waiting. I spent six years of running until I discovered that the Lord is patient and kind and is not willing that any should perish. I want the world to know about the precious Name of Jesus, the name I was once ashamed of, the Name that I now bear through His death and resurrection.
If you're reading this...
... and you are in the same position that I was, all those years ago. Maybe the world doesn't seem to make sense any more. Maybe it never has. Maybe you realise that all isn't quite the way it should be.
Jesus hasn't forgotten you, even though you might have tried to forget Him. Don't let your self centred pride put a barrier between you and salvation. I spent six years in a parched, virtual wilderness until I realised that the living water, provided in Christ, was mine to drink.
But it all sounds such nonsense...
... I thought so too, until I realised that I wasn't fooling anyone. I realised that, in God's eyes, I'd sinned. Oh, I could cover up pretty well with my friends and parents but I'd broken the majority of the ten commandments. I'd lied, I'd stolen stuff, I'd coveted other people's stuff, I'd lusted after girls and dishonoured my parents (and my grandparents too.) I'd certainly not put God first and I'd been guilty of worshipping idols, little gods of my own creation like football, motor racing, hobbies, friends, movies - the list was endless. Just about everything came before God in my life.
If you're in that position, ask yourself the following questions.
If you were to die today, would you be sure of a place in Heaven or would you go to Hell? We all die, everyone of us, most live a long life and die full of years but some die young. We don't know our time of death. If we did, we'd sort things out then, wouldn't we?
Do you consider yourself good enough to pass God's standards for entry into Heaven? Have you reached the pass mark? Being honest, and I mean really honest, we know that we haven't come anywhere near. Ask yourself the same questions.. Have you lied, stolen, blasphemed, dishonoured your parents. The full list is contained in the Bible book of Exodus, chapter 20.
If you realise that you've been guilty of all these things, consider what will happen when you die and stand before Jesus' throne of judgement.
When He recounts all the sin in your life, do you really think that you will have the answers.
Friend, the only answer that you can give that will satisfy God's Justice is the Name that I was so ashamed of so many years ago. Jesus is the only name under Heaven whereby we might be saved. Jesus is THE way, THE truth and THE life. No-one can come to the Father except through Him.
Please, repent of your sins and put your trust in Jesus for He is mighty to save.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.