I walked away from God and celebrated with a beer

Photo credit: Fireramsey on flickr

Editor’s note: This testimony came to us in French and has been translated into English.

I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Saviour when I was 12 years old. At that time, I had recognized that I was a sinner—the deep desires of my heart were wicked and separated me from God. Thanks to Jesus Christ, I was reconciled to God.

After my conversion, I followed the Lord, not without struggle, until halfway through my sixteenth year. I knew that I needed God and His Word in my life, and yet, at the beginning of the summer of my sixteenth year, I decided to follow my own path, doing whatever I pleased. Upon telling the Lord what I intended to do, I opened a beer which I drank to celebrate the choice I had just made. I knew in my heart that this decision would continue long after the summer holidays. That was the beginning, until not so long ago, of a life filled with alcohol, drugs and sex. I abandoned the Lord for 25 years.

I came into contact with GoodSeed’s material when a Christian whom I had known for some years sent me an email to find out how I was doing. Several years earlier, I had abruptly cut off all ties with this Christian because, at that time, I did not want to hear about God nor live for the Lord. You see, I had no longer believed in God. At least, I didn’t know Him very well because I had strayed from Him and broken off my relationship with Him.

As a follow-up to the email exchange, we met to talk. During our meeting, this Christian suggested that we do a study together using L’Homme sur le chemin d’Emmaüs (The Stranger on the Road to Emmaus in French). We could do it at my place for one or two hours a week. I accepted his proposition without much expectation and not knowing where this would lead me, but I was willing to do the study.

God used this Christian brother and the Stranger study at that precise moment in my life to bring me back to Himself. Although He had tried many times during the previous years, I had always more or less refused to listen. But this time when I met this brother and he offered to do the study with me, the timing was perfect. I was at a point where I no longer wanted to continue to live the life I had been living. Having unsuccessfully tried everything in an effort to be happy and to be free from my life of sin, I was ready to look to the Lord, to see if that would work. Deep in my heart I needed help; I needed Jesus. And what better way to help me return to the Lord than a brother and the teaching of the deep truths of the Bible.

The study changed my mind about what I believed about God and His Word, the Bible. It also changed my worldview. Since I had lived many years far from God and the message of the Bible, I had developed wrong ideas about its content. In addition, my overall knowledge of the Bible was very limited. I had never understood that there was a unifying thread throughout the Bible. Thanks to this study, I understood, among other things, the link between the Old and New Testament. To this day, this new understanding of the Bible helps me to better understand the Scriptures.

The chronological method of telling the Bible’s story was very helpful to my understanding of it. The visual aids wonderfully reinforced an idea or truth of God. The terminology used in the Bible was also explained which greatly helped my understanding. At the end of the study, everything that had been seen and explained earlier fell into place which was very surprising and left me speechless. The Bible’s message became very clear.

This study came at just the right time in my life. First, God used it to help me understand who He is. Then, He used it to restore my relationship with Him. And He also used it to help me find and integrate into a local church. He gave me a firm foundation to better understand His Word.

 

Photo credit: Fireramsey on flickr