So my testimony. I want to keep this concise and relevant. I grew up in “church.” My dad was a preacher and my mom was involved in music. Unfortunately, my parents separated and divorced when I was young and I really don’t have a lot of memories of that time. I believe that’s probably a grace of the Lord to me. My dad continued in the ministry travelling up and down the east coast.
My mom and I moved to Winter Park Florida around 1983 or 1984 to be closer to her work and me closer to school. We were members of Calvary Assembly in Orlando Florida and I was a part of the youth ministry, leading the high school worship team. While on the outside I put on a pretty good show as a “Christian,” on the inside I was anything but a servant of the Lord. I served my own flesh and the lusts thereof. The fact that there is an actual difference between those two existences was never discussed in church. I was living a lie and was miserable doing so.
In 1988 I reconnected with my Dad when he came to visit me for graduation. He offered me the opportunity to move to VT and learn about the Lord. I declined for many reasons and went on to college. The Lord has a real way of getting my attention. And in a little less than a year, things had moved around quite a bit and I was eager to leave Florida my full ride at college, girlfriend, car, status at Calvary Assembly, etc. I packed up and left home.
When I got to VT I thought initially that things had gone from bad to worse. Gone was the “esteem” I had enjoyed back in Florida. This was a fellowship that operated in the discernment of the Holy Spirit and all the pride, self esteem, and hypocrisy was right out front and center. There was no façade that could be used to hide behind. This was a “Christianity” that was like no other I’d experienced. There was a focus on Jesus being the center of our lives, not we as the center of His. It has taken decades for the Lord to purge out the pride, lies, unbelief, and hypocrisy, that has run rampant in my life. He’s still showing me areas where I fall short. And, I continue to surrender those areas to Him as His way is the way to life everlasting.
The Lord’s been very gracious to me. I was lost and did not know it. I had been fed so many lies and false doctrines and had accepted and received all of them because they were convenient, were self-serving, and self-justifying. But, thanks to my Dad’s prayers, and his faithfulness to the Lord, believing the Lord’s promise to him that I would one day minster alongside him service to the Lord, the Lord broke through my selfish heart and had mercy on me.
Today my family and I are full time in the ministry, serving the Lord in the ministry that my dad founded back when I was just a child. In 2017 I was with my Dad when he passed away. I have to say that his passing has sparked a fire in me to be yet more zealous, more committed, more dedicated, and more serious about my walk with the Lord and my service to Him. I struggle with just how easy it is to fall back to the days of fakery and self-righteousness. But thanks to the Grace of God, He does not let me get too far out of bounds. God is good and regardless of how I feel or what happened yesterday, if there’s breath in me, I can put that off and turn to Jesus and He will forgive and restore all things.
I don’t know what’s in store for me going forward. But, I know that I don’t need to fear it. The good things of God are good and they are there for anyone that would simply believe and receive them. I look forward to seeing what miracle He is going to perform next in my life.