I want to give a brief testimony on this blog. I already have a page on this blog with part of my testimony, but I want to make a brief one here. I was challenged when a friend asked a group of us if there were anyone who would share their testimony in 2 minutes, to which I automatically know that I can't do in that time period. But I will try to hit a few key points in this one.
I came from a morally good family, where mom took us to various churches most of our lives. In these churches, I never heard the Gospel message though, and was wondering what it was that God wanted us to know.
When I was 14, God began to make Himself real to me. I was proud, arrogant, and making a name for myself (and being successful at it). This thought of God was continually in my mind, 24/7. After a while, I wondered what it was that God wanted me to know.
Yet, I was running away from God as much as I possibly could. At this stage in my life, I didn't want God. I wanted to run my own life and do what I thought would make me happy.
Some of the things I was getting myself into could have been dangerous. I almost got raped. I met people taking hard drugs and even had a boyfriend who was on these drugs. Some of the guys I met, weren't good at all for me, and I ended up brokenhearted (could have ended up a lot worse).
This inner knowing that God was trying to reach my heart continued. I told the Voice in my heart, one night, that I would rather go to hell with my friends than turn to Him. But the Voice and inner knowing that God wanted me to know something continued anyway.
My mom prayed that I would meet a nice boy that I could date (the ones I was bringing home were unacceptable). I have to go back to the week before in order for you to appreciate this story. I was seeing a guy who played in a band (wasn't allowed to date him though), and he introduced me to another guy while we were at the Youth Center one night. I wasn't paying attention though, because I had an ex boyfriend who was just a couple of feet away, that I was trying to make jealous so he would like me again. The following week, was the week my mom prayed for a nice boy for me to date. I remet this guy I was introduced to the week before. At this point in my life, God was far away from me, but I knew there was Something telling me to meet this boy again (actually, I didn't remember that it was the same guy that my boyfriend in the band introduced me to, the week before). So we met, or rather, met again. And we started dating.
The first date was to a place which he wouldn't tell me. He just said, 'you will like it. It has music there'. All I could think of was that I was going to be trapped at some religious meeting where I would come face to face with the fact that God was trying to get my attention. I dreaded the thought of where this new boyfriend was going to take me.
The night came for our first date. It was at a church building and it was called, 'Young Life'. I saw some of my friends/enemies there. Some of them were smoking. I almost pulled out a cigarette, but didn't. I reluctantly listened to the speaker and didn't understand what he was saying. I was afraid I was going to hear some message telling me that I was going to go to hell.
I avoided anything that had to do with 'religion' because of my fear of going to hell. Actually, I was afraid that I would find out that I was doomed and that there was no hope. So, anything that had to do with God that came my way, I closed my ears to. In fact, I remember being in the car with my parents, and there was a religious program on the radio, which I thought was strange. I made my ears clogged so I couldn't hear what the guy was saying.
My new boyfriend was a Christian. He asked me if I were a Christian, to which I said that I was. He talked to me about being baptized. We even went out and talked to his pastor about being baptized. I had no clue what this pastor was talking about. The pastor gave me a little booklet called, 'The 4 Spiritual Laws' which I took home and read over and over again.
We moved to a new house when I was almost 16. I was still dating my Christian boyfriend, yet, I didn't understand the Gospel yet. I still loved myself and still had cigarettes with me (I could actually buy them from a convenience store, but I could get them from rolling up cigarettes for my mom with her cigarette rolling machine. I would just make some for myself as well). My boyfriend actually told me that if I smoked, he wouldn't be dating me.
The devil told me that Christians looked dowdy and if I were to become one, I would have to wear my hair in a bun, use no make-up, wear saddle shoes and black shirts with white blouses. I couldn't imagine a 'Christian' girl wearing normal everyday clothing, so in my mind, I met a bet with God. I would become a Christian if I could see Christian girls wearing blue jeans and make up, if they needed it. Sure enough, God heard my bet.
In homeroom, we sat by alphabetical order of our last names. There was a bubbly girl who sat behind me in our row. She seemed to have a lot of people around her all the time, and she talked about the Lord as if He were right there with her. I thought this was strange, but I was intrigued. She asked me if I were a Christian, and, of course, I told her I was. Actually, I thought maybe I was by this time, because I had voluntarily prayed the prayer in the back of the 4 Spiritual Laws booklet. But I am not sure that I understood what the Gospel really was then.
I had a lot of questions for this girl, who sat behind me in homeroom. I remember her asking, 'Don't you love Him?' I never heard about having a relationship with God. But she was a living example of what that was like.
I knew I was a sinner, but I didn't see my sin as offensive to God. My sins were minor, so I thought. But deep down in my heart, I knew that I was in rebellion to my parents, (and to all authority) and I was running my whole life the way I wanted to. I understood that one day, for a question came into my mind. It was a question of 'which way are you going to go?'
By this time, my boyfriend and I loved each other and were planning on getting married, probably in the future. But he didn't know the other side of me, even at this point in our relationship. I felt like I was two different people. Do I want to continue on the road to fame, and continue whatever it was I was doing to become popular, or, would I be willing to let go of all that in order to gain eternal life? Eventually, I would have to tell my boyfriend, and we would have to break up because he was dating someone he didn't know, but would find out one day. But, I could give all this up, and live for the Lord, and still have my boyfriend, if this was God's will for us. I was in the family room when this question was before me. I decided at that moment, to give up all the things that were so successful (or that I thought were successful, but were really lies from the devil) and to follow the God that I was running away from the year before that.
It was amazing how God led me to meet all these different people He used to position me to come to Him. My life was radically transformed. God began working in my heart and the Bible was alive to me. I now understood what sin was, and why Jesus had to die on the Cross. It all made sense now.
God gave me a new heart, and helped me to be able to say 'no' to sin. He gave me a brand new life with the power to live this kind of life. It was a new adventure for me, and the best one I could ever have had. It is better than anything I could ever imagine.
My boyfriend and I were married two years later. On another blog sometime, I will write about that adventure, and how God led us to the church we are in, and the relationships with people we have in the body of Christ today. (Clue: the church we are in today, has a lot to do with the girl who sat behind me in homeroom).
If you have any questions about this, that you would like to ask me personally, send an email to: RUgood@mail.com
If you would like to learn more about the Gospel, please go to http://thegospelconversation.blogspot.com