On Sunday afternoon, mom and dad always made us have a quiet time after lunch unless we were traveling or had some church function to attend. After lunch on Sunday we had to lay on our beds and rest at least until 4 in the afternoon. This gave mom and dad an opportunity to rest too. The only thing we were allowed to do was read books or other quiet activities and of course take a nap. (To this day everyone in my family loves their Sunday Afternoon nap)
It was one such Sunday afternoon that I was lying on my bed. My grandparents had given me a White Bible with my name engraved in gold for Easter the previous spring. I was horse crazy as a child and loved looking through that Bible at the pictures because of the horses. The paintings were amazing. I remember being drawn to the Bible and looking at the pictures.. I suddenly realized that I had heard every story that was illustrated in the book. I started from the beginning and remembered the stories and God touched my heart as I look through each one. It was like he was looking at the pictures with me.
Then suddenly as I looked at Mary holding baby Jesus I was awakened to the fact that this was God. By the time the realization flooded me that he went to all this trouble for me; He did it all for me, because he loved me so much. I looked at the painting of Jesus on the cross. Tears streamed down my face because I suddenly, at the age of 8 years, knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God sent his son to die for me too. And that he loved me and wanted me to be a part of him.
I cried and cried because of what he suffered for me. I looked at the different pictures again and God touched my heart with each of them. Adam and Eve: they disobeyed God and I knew in my heart that all people would be separated from God because of disobedience, even me.
Moses on the Mountain side with the 10 Commandments: These were a gift from God to show us what not to do. They were to prevent us from being separated from God, I was guilty of having broken a number of them. Had not I been angry and disrespectful to my parents sometimes? Had not I sometimes lied to protect myself? Had not I taken things that didnít belong to me? Even just recently in my life hadnít I disrespected Godís Holy Name by using it frivolously just like my friends at school so I could feel accepted?
Realization hit me hard. I was just like Adam and Eve. I didnít want to be separated from God. I especially didnít want to be separated from God for all eternity. It was there on my bed on a Sunday afternoon, because God can speak even through pictures in a Bible to a child, I told God that I was sorry for all the sins I had committed against him, and then I asked Jesus come into my life. I didnít have anyone lead me to Christ, but there were faithful people of God who planted the seeds right up to that day so I would know. From that moment on I had perfect assurance of Godís love for me and that Jesus paid the price for all my sins.
That of course was only the beginning. It has been a varied and rocky road to get here. Many times I didnít have faith and refused to trust God. He stayed right by me the entire time loving me, protecting me, letting me have my own way, and letting me bare the fruit of my own disobedience until I finally I stopped trying to run my life and ran after him.
. When I finally yielded my love, my life, and my trust to him, he poured out his spirit on me and began teaching me with his spirit. He also began to restore relationships to me. He began the process of healing all the hurts and physical troubles; He began a good work in my life and will be faithful to complete it. The fruit of his good work in my life began to appear not by my effort but by his. What amazing love!
If you were inspired by this testamony or would like to make a personal statement of faith for the first time. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Practical Comfort is a prayer and encouragement ministry of LLMartin. Providing prayer coaching, intercession, deliverance and warfare upon request. She also provides encoragements and coaching for those wishing to step out in faith and be taught by the Holy Spirit.
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Essays and Art of the Florida Outpouring