THE TESTIMONY OF DENISE DIEHL
I was not always on fire for the Lord God. I was a sinner just like everyone else.
I was born into and raised in the Roman Catholic institution, yet in my heart a faint curiosity for Jesus surfaced at a young age that persisted throughout my life. However, I was extremely shy and couldn't even speak His Name without intense fear and embarrassment.
At one point in my life I thought I was saved, at the age of 14 while watching a 700 Club TV program and repeating the words Pat Robertson prayed. Yet the true reality of being born again didn't hit me until 20 years later.
When I was a child, I was your classic introvert. I wore thick cat-eye glasses and was scorned and mocked in my formative years. Because of this treatment, I hated pretty much everyone and everything. I had no ambition to work, and no drive to make anything of my life. I basically was a sluggard and a nobody who wanted someone to take care of me and do things for me so I wouldn't have to do it myself. I had no friends and was a castaway and an unknown for most of my years. And I was terrified of anything to do with God.
This went on until after I got married and after I already had four children. Even though God blessed me with a husband and family, and a roof over our head and clothes on our backs, I was tired of my life. I had nothing except a big empty void in my soul that nothing I tried seemed to fill.
In my single years I had lived through days of playing the harlot, slothfulness, gluttony and isolation, and I was sick of it all. Now, family wasn't cutting it. Now I had a desperate need to fill that void. I could only recall one thing: JESUS CHRIST. The One I was desperately afraid of, the One Whom I sought in secret, was gently calling my name.
During (New Birth)
Several years ago, we had gotten a computer, and soon we were AOL members. One fine day in March of 1999 I was browsing the various features on this new service. I had no idea a miracle was about to take place.
My attention was caught by the chat rooms. Soon, by the grace of the all-knowing God, I found my way to a Christian room called "Bible Fellowship". I stayed put, listening to the conversation. People were praying and praising God all over the place.
Then someone asked me if I wanted to know Jesus. I was stunned. I didn't think anyone had even noticed me there. I am now convinced the Holy Spirit drew me in there for a reason.
I shyly typed, Yes, feeling like I wanted to leave but couldn't. Like a pair of gentle yet strong hands, the power of the Holy Ghost held me still as they began to pray over me, asking God to forgive my sins, and for Jesus to come into my heart. I agreed with all of it, not understanding what happened but I still felt great. Nothing like this had ever happened to me before, and I wanted more! I left out of there a changed person, a newborn child of God!
From that day forth, I could only think of Jesus. For reasons I could not think of in the natural, I just had to be near Jesus. I had a burden to serve Him, to fellowship with Him, and to pray to and please Him. I hungered for His Word, the Bible. I used to hate going to mass, but now I can't get enough of Godly fellowship! Everything looked different, and I can see with more clarity now than before.
I have grown stronger day by day, and I will not cease to serve Him till He comes. This is nothing like my old life. No one cared about me before, but now Jesus cares. No one loved me before, but now Jesus loves me. Before I met Jesus, people would feign friendship with me, then throw me away like yesterday's trash. Now Jesus is my only and best Friend, and I know in my heart that He will never leave me or forsake me.
I realize now, looking back, that it was the merciful hand of Jesus that delivered me out of my troublesome days, and it was the will of Jesus that I would be spared to this day, to be saved on a computer and dedicate the rest of my life to Him in service and devotion.
Jesus is the only Person who knew me before I was even born, silently and skillfully forming me in my mother's womb, and watching over my whole life. He knows everything about me, my thoughts, my desires, and the longings of my heart. He solves my problems, and carrries me through every valley. He rejoices with me on the mountaintops!
Jesus, my Provider, fills my every need, and just in time, too. He is my ever-present Guide, and Companion, and my only true Love. All things are under His sovereign control. No one and nothing else matters, or comes close.
I am alive today all because of the Lord Jesus Christ, and His shed blood which cleansed me of my sin. I believe in Him. Glory to God! What about you? Do you want to know Jesus?
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