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Discussion Forum : General Topics : I'd like to hear your personal testimony

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tinluke
Member



Joined: 2005/4/8
Posts: 220
New England USA

 I'd like to hear your personal testimony

Would anyone like to share a persoal testimony about how God has called them into the ministry?? Not about what school you attended or the church you grew up in, but a deep passion in your heart. A leading by the Holy spirit or a deep cry in your soul to be a voice for the Lord. Is this just the inward cry of every lover of Christ or a specific calling?? I'd like to hear what my brothers and sisters have to say.


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tina

 2006/3/16 19:22Profile
Graftedbranc
Member



Joined: 2005/11/8
Posts: 619


 Re: I'd like to hear your personal testimony

Rom 10:17 "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."

Gal. 3:2 "This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?"

1 Thess. 1:4,5 "Knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God. For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance..."

At the age of 17, I was thoroughly, completely, and eternally converted to the faith of Jesus Christ and saved. I was not raised as a religious person. I was raised in a relatively agnostic environment. My father was an engineer and on staff at a famous university and I was raised in the atmosphere of our present scientific age. As a result of the sinful nature I inherited from our fallen progenitor, Adam, I was by nature a child of wrath, separated from the life of God, and under the control of the prince of the power of the air which now works in the sons of disobedience.

Practically speaking, like many teenagers, I was in a bad way at age 17. I was involved in many things contrary to my parents, school, and everything good and wholesome and was headed down both an eternal and temporally destructive path. A friend of mine and my brother's from our childhood had been recently saved and visiting home from college, was preaching Jesus Christ to his friends and family. The Lord was convicting many of us by His Spirit as a result of this person's testimony of Christ and his preaching. Over time the Spirit had been preparing me and eventually, my friend sat me down and preached to me Jesus Christ. The Bible says, "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God" (Romans 10:17), and also that we "receive the Spirit by the hearing of faith" (Gal. 3:2). I had the Gospel preached to me, as I listened to the word of truth, the Spirit revealed to me the reality of the Son of God, His crucifixion for my sins, and His resurrection from the dead. As I heard, there rose in me an appreciation for the Person of Christ and a consciousness of His presence. I repented and calling upon the Name of the Lord Jesus, I believed into the crucified and resurrected Son of God. That day, that time, that evening, the resurrected Christ came into me as the indwelling life giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45b, Romans 8:2), regenerated my fallen and dead spirit, became to me my Lord, my Savior, and my Life and took up residence in me forever.

This reality, this Eternal Life is that which is according to the promise of God in Jesus Christ (1 Tim 1:1, 1 John 5:11,12). And according to this indwelling Eternal Life who is Christ Himself and which has been in me, with me, for me, and to me for 30 years, I testify today that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. I have not been in many things faithful to Him, nor have I walked a straight path. But as my indwelling Lord and Life, according to His Word, He has never left me nor forsaken me, nor has his nature, life, love, holiness, perfection, or any other attribute been altered or changed by my performance, or lack there of. Yes, rather I have realized Him more and more as my Life. And as this Life is also the Light of men, I have seen more and more distinctly my own corrupt self centeredness and bankruptcy, and according to His unfailing and eternal indwelling nature, I have learned more and more to live by Him and not by my natural life.

As I have learned more and more to partake of Christ as the Spirit daily through feeding on Hin in the Word, the breaking of bread, and the fellowship of the Saints, I have found Christ being constituted into my being in a real and substantial way. Our Lord said, "He who eats me shall live by Me" and in this we assimilate the Living Christ into us through the Spirit in our spirit and we find Him living himself out in us daily.

Galatians 2:20 says:

I have been crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live in the flesh, I live in and by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me - RcV.

This reality of the union of God with His redeemed Saints in Christ has increasingly become my experience. Since I began to meet with the local church in my city. I have found the Lord Jesus gaining me in many things and my life has become increasingly rooted and secured in the experience of this reality. On the one hand, I can testify as the Word teaches, that my flesh has not improved or changed nor the principle of sin been excised from my being. But on the other hand I have found the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus setting me free from the law of sin and death and forming Christ in me through the operation of the Spirit in me in the circumstances which God has ordained for my good. Learning to call on the Lord in every circumstance and in every condition, I have been finding the reality of the indwelling Christ to be sufficient for every need.

While on my own as an independent Christian I did enjoy a measure of grace and experience of Christ, it is only in the fellowship of the body that the reality of the Christian life has become realized in a practical way. I find that not only am I being sanctified and transformed within, but also I am being conformed to Christ as the Pattern both in substance and in shape. And I am finding that God's Eternal Purpose is not to make some great spiritual giant out of me, but to fit me into His body to function in the capacity of ministering Life. The execution of this ministry simply requires the daily living in and by the Spirit denying my natural life and bearing the fruit of the Spirit, and also the taking of a walk in and by the Spirit in an orderly way for the accomplishment of God's economy which is to dispense Himself in Christ by the Spirit into me and through me into others. My life is to feed on and eat Christ, assimilate Him, Live Him and express Him for the building up of His body and the enlargement of the church.

In the local church I have found Life, Light, encouragement, and my function as a member of the body of Christ. I have found a consistent supply of the Spirit in the fellowship of the saints and in the ministry I have found abundant supply of nourishment, teaching, doctrine and example. I have had the privilege of fellowshipping with those saints who are evidently filled with Christ and manifest Christ in a real and genuine way. And just being in the Presence of the Saints often brings one into the conscious Presence of Christ and the Life of Christ is imparted just by being there.

I have enjoyed the reality that I am not called to do a "great work for God" but I am called to be a functioning member of the body of Christ in participating in what God is doing in the earth. That is the building and perfecting of His Bride and bringing into practical reality the One New Man. The Expression of God in Christ by the Spirit in His redeemed tripartite saints.


Graftedbranch

 2006/3/16 20:09Profile
tinluke
Member



Joined: 2005/4/8
Posts: 220
New England USA

 Re:

Quote:
I have enjoyed the reality that I am not called to do a "great work for God" but I am called to be a functioning member of the body of Christ in participating in what God is doing in the earth. That is the building and perfecting of His Bride and bringing into practical reality the One New Man. The Expression of God in Christ by the Spirit in His redeemed tripartite saints.




Thank you so much for sharing your testimony! I love to hear how the Lord is working in His servants hearts and lives! What a blessing to hear!


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tina

 2006/3/16 20:21Profile
TaKa
Member



Joined: 2003/4/17
Posts: 124
Louisiana

 Re: I'd like to hear your personal testimony


When I was born, my parents were very young, and as I understand the story, they were not nearly ready to have a child. They decided that I should be given into the care of my father's sister and her husband to give me a better chance. It was the best decision they could have ever made.

What was misdiagnosed as anything from dyslexia to an acute learning disability in me as a child turned into mischief and rebellion as I made the transition from elementary into Jr. high school. I was coming of age and felt an increased need for belonging and emotional support. I began to search for acceptance at school among my friends. Unfortunately at this time in my life, I was more of a follower than a leader, and I ended up hanging out with and following some pretty negative influences that led me into trouble.

By 7th grade, the school system determined that I was a gifted student and put me in special classes. I guess they figured that maybe if they gave me more challenging schoolwork to do I would be less likely to get bored and get into trouble. My friends and I were smoking and drinking, and by the 8th grade we were stealing from our parents and from other kids lockers to buy pills and weed. A teacher caught a group of us one day with pills and the police were called in just to scare us real good, but we were never really punished for having drugs at school.

By the time I reached 9th grade, I began to realize that I had a problem with drugs and signed myself into a local rehab facility. Six weeks and $10,000 later, the doctors were not able to make any real progress with me, and I was released against medical advice. Two weeks later I was smoking and drinking again.

Meanwhile, I had a close friend who had become a Christian and began to pray for my salvation. She had experienced some problems of her own and I think she was even placed in several different foster homes, but after awhile she returned and was back in school with us. I began to notice that she was now altogether a different person than she was before. It took three years for me to finally agree to go to church with her. She never gave up on me and never stopped praying for me the whole time.

Just a few months before my eighteenth birthday, I went to check out a youth service at my friend's church. I had never seen anything like it. Young people were singing, clapping and raising their hands in worship. I thought this was all kind of weird because I had been raised in a very different religious environment and had never been to a charismatic or pentecostal-type church before. At the same time, I had an undeniable impression that night in my spirit that what these young people had was real. I went back to that youth service the very next week to find out more of what it was all about.

The things the Youth Pastor said that night seemed to speak directly to me. When he called for people who felt like they needed prayer to come up to the front, I knew I was one of them. He explained to me that if I confessed my past mistakes to God, He would forgive me for my failings and accept me as His own. He said that if I believed in my heart that God had sent His Son Jesus to die for my sins, and that if I confessed with my mouth that God had raised Jesus from the dead to give me a new start in life, that I would be changed into a brand new person and be able to start all over again with a clean slate.

The change that I was never quite able to attain for myself, the help that always seemed just out of my reach, was finally realized that night. What the doctors could not do in six weeks, Jesus was able to accomplish in about twenty minutes. I was set free and delivered from drugs in that instant. The Bible says that if anyone belongs to Christ, he has become a new person. Old things are passed away and everything is new again. That's exactly what happened to me that night. I would never be the same again!

I began to attend the youth meetings there regularly, and even got involved in music ministry and sound engineering. Eventually I would begin to grow and desire more, and was led to a larger church a year later just as they were starting up a new discipleship program for their youth group. God's timing is perfect. He brought me to exactly the place I needed to be at just the right time. I received the exact kind of spiritual teaching I had been looking for and continued to grow as a follower of Jesus Christ.

I soon began to realize that because of my turbulent adolescence, God wanted to use me to reach out to other young people who were going through some of the same things I had passed through. I began talking to some of my younger friends, letting them know that they could save themselves a world of trouble by listening to the advice of someone who had already been where they were. Some other Christian friends and I started going out to the mall on Friday nights to talk to young people about their spiritual condition. It was an exciting time. Several young men came to Jesus through our outreach there and are themselves involved in ministry to this day.

During my late 20s and early 30s I fell away from God bigtime and began again to live the sort of life I was living before my conversion. But this time as an adult, it was even worse. Although I was not doing drugs I was drinking alot, among other things, and I fell back into depression. To make a long story short, It took me a little while to regain my senses and come back to the Lord, but slowly and surely I'm doing it. His patience is amazing!

As the years went by, I began to develop a burden not only to evangelize young people, but also to help disciple them and equip them with the things they need for their entire lifetime as Christians. I feel a responsibility to God to be a mentor to young disciples, helping them to become mature believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. To whom much is given, of him will be much required!


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Troy

 2006/3/19 9:18Profile





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