A Testimony of God's Grace
This is a testimony of how Jesus saves. He is still working, forming me into a vessel usable in His fields. Salvation is intended for each of us, for you! I want to encourage young people especially to "remember thy Creator in the days of thy youth."
I grew up here in Namibia, Africa, on a farm as the second child. We were part of the Duch Reformed Church and with both my parents Christians, I had biblical teaching all my life. My early childhood was very happy and sheltered from a lot of worldly influence.
After being homeschooled for the first year, my sister and I were send to a private school where we stayed in a hostel and came home only on weekends. When I was only nine years old, my mother died. My father, left alone with four children, started searching earnestly after more of God's truth. As we went from charismatic churhes to prosperity gospels and countless other groups in a few years, I started to be totally disgusted with this thing called religion. Surrounded by worldly friends, unsure about what or where truth is, and far from home, I started to go hard after the pleasures of this world. As I got older, more and more of my weekends were filled with academic and athletic activities. I tried to spend most of my free weekends with friends or staying in at the hostel, anything to keep from going home! My life was filling up with immodesty, entertainment, dateing, and the applause of the world.
My father, in his quest for truth, started to attend a small fellowship. This handful of people were different from all the others, seeming unable to fit any current denomination. Here was the desire to do only the will of God and actually living it in every aspect; the same as that which was burning in my father all these years. He started to realise that he was losing me to this world very quickly, and so with a leap of faith he decided to homeschool us all again, but this time as a single parent.
Homeschooling wasn't easy! Somehow the Lord carried us through all those tuff times. With all the new responsabilities and and challenges, I lost interest in my old friends and ignored them. Looking back, I can clearly see God's plan with that. With the peer pressure mostly gone, the drugs of this world started to work out and I was more and more able to see all the folly of the things that I once thought important. With all of this also came the realization of my unsaved state, which was very uncomfortable! I saw the Lord change my sister daily and my heart yearned for it in my own life, but there was certain sins that I was not willing to let go. At times I was greatly inspired to walk a holy life, so I would try again to be good. I would repent halfway, try to feel that I was saved and dress more modestly for a time. It never worked because I was not willing to surrender every area in my life completely. Each time the enthusiam wore off, I felt more lost than ever. I was misserable!
In academics I worked superhard to finish school early and leave home. I lived daily for my independence. When I did not do schoolwork, I filled my life with entertainment. Horseriding also offered a way for me to feel accomplishment. It was an idol in my life. Besides giving me a nice physical workout, I used it as an excuse to wear jeans.
So I realized that following Jesus halfway didnt work. Obviously not! Jesus said that many years ago. "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself." I wasn't willing to follow Jesus wholeheartedly and therefore mentally decided that I am not a Christian and will stop any effort to become one until I was going to do it wholeheartedly. In making this decision, I knew exactly where I stood before God.
Despite the fact that I was sure about my lost state, I put the question of repentance far from me... I was still young, I will repent later... why now?
But the Lord had plans to bring back this lost soul. One of my friends who knew about this devasting decision I had made, kept probing... warning... praying...
I was not willing to listen. Someday I will give heed, not now!
All this despising of Jesus blood reached a point of crises and God stepped in drastically!
One summer afternoon I was gathering the sheep with the horse. It was supposed to be a surprise for my father who was still working cattle on the other farm. After three tedious hours of riding, I took the horse and rode one last round, looking for stray sheep. As we started to gallop, I realised that my saddle was not cinched tight enough anymore. The saddle started to slip sideways, making the horse spook and take off at full speed over very rocky terrain. I slipped off and fell hard... I guess!
When I came back to consciesness, I was utterly unable to remember anything. My family felt the reality of the accident more than I did; they had to repeat things over and over again to me, see me loose my ability of speech, assist as I was vomiting on the way to the hospital. And me? I was too sick to think! A week later my brain was still muddy, but my health was being restored. A long story made short, I had a wake-up call! There is no age for death! Calculating afterwards, I realised that I was unconscience for half an hour. Half an hour of hovering near hell... half an hour of battling for one soul! That realization shook me up quite a bit.
And yet I postponed! I had this burning question of wether I could ever have complete victory over sin. Was I willing to go all the way, forsake all wordly pleasures? About a month after the accident, my friend called again and urged me strongly to see what was at stake. He reminded me that if I keep on resisting the promptings of the Holy Spirit, He will leave me and I will be unable to repent. After sharing his testimony, he told me that I have to look for a promise and a command in God's Word the day I do repent. It will help to keep me when Satan tries to shake my faith in God's forgiveness. Then the telephone went off. As I stood there crying, I saw clearly that accepting God's gift of salvation was the most important and that nothing beside that is of any use. I sat down right there where I was and repented of all my sins and surrendered my life totally to the care of my loving Heavenly Father. I walked to my room and opened my Bible for the promise and my eye fell to 1 Corinthians 10:13 "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God isfaithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." Well, my question was answered with a beautiful promise! Now for the command... I turned the page and my eyes fell on this verse: 1 Chorinthians 11:13 "
Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?" There was no doubt in my mind as to what was said to me, so I put on the covering right there. It was not easy. There was a heavy struggle in my heart, but Jesus was more presious to me than all the approvement of this world. I have counted the cost, and had taken up the cross on the 31st of March 2016, just before my 17th birthday.
On 5 February 2017 I was buried with Jesus by baptism unto death, and raised with him into newness of life.
What a glorious day, what a wonderful experience!
My hearts desire is this... hands comitted to do my Father's business, feet commited to walk His way, eyes commithed to seek His face, ears keen to His voice, mouth comitted to speak His Word, and a life comitted to serve even as He did!
Dear Reader, are you saved? If you are, doesn't it thrill you through and through to recognize the Father's hand in someone else's life and know that you are familiar with that dear voice?
If you are not, the Saviour pleads with you not to delay!
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