Testimony – Penny

I first realised that I needed to be right with God in 2002, it was at a house with some friends, they were talking about what it is to be a Christian and I suddenly understood that I was not a Christian, it was then that I first began to seriously seek the Lord.  It took some time before I came to believe that I was saved, but over the last year I have felt a closeness with the Lord that I had not previously felt.

 As a young disabled woman I had a lot of anger about my disability, I wondered why the Lord had made me this way, but since I have come to trust in His grace and His goodness I have learned to accept my condition and now seek to glorify God in and despite it.  By His grace I recently came to Ebenezer Reformed Baptist Church, and through the preaching of Gods Word I have learned (and am learning more and more) to accept my disability, I have come to understand that no matter what state I am in, His grace is sufficient, and His love, which is shown to me through the Lord Jesus Christ is without bounds.

 My devotional life has improved dramatically, at the moment I am studying Psalms 23 and, as you would expect, I am finding a great deal of comfort in that Psalm, especially v4: yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me, Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me. It is good to know that wherever I am Jesus is with me, He is my Good Shepherd (providentially, after giving this testimony to Tony the visiting preacher preached on this very psalm).

 As far as my salvation is concerned, I am sure that I am trusting the Lord Jesus and nothing else.  I want to be Baptised so that I can walk in obedience to His Word, I am less frightened at night, and I feel more of His closeness.  From the age of 8 I have wanted to be Baptised, now I am sure that it is both the time and that it is the right thing to do.  Every day He teaches me more and more, He is teaching me – Thy will be done – in my own life.

Far from being bitter about my condition, I now understand why I am here, He wanted me to exist, He planned me before time and has always had a plan for my life, one where I would come to love Him, and He has had His hand on my life from the day I was born. He wanted me to exist, and He wanted me to be His own, and by His grace alone this has come to pass. I am still a sinner, but I am a sinner saved by His grace and kept by His love.  I am convinced of these things, that they area true work of God in my life, and I want to serve Him as best I can and to the glory of His name.

 

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Testimony – Rachel Bickley

1614290_10153212024752051_3947591859006999184_oWhen I was young I was always a bit of a worrier. I used to worry that I had a brain tumour or scarlet fever. Looking back I think it was because I knew I wasn’t prepared for what would happen when I died. My parents spent hours explaining how to become a Christian. Repent of your sins, and believe in Jesus Christ. Trust that your sins can be forgiven because of His death and resurrection. 

I can’t really pin down the exact date of becoming a Christian, I just remember reading my Bible when I was about 12 and realising that I did believe. Jesus really had died for me and now I had to live for Him. I was baptised later that year, and soon after my 13th birthday my family made the move from Birmingham to Brighton.

 When I was sixteen I started work, and found myself starting to drift away from God. It happened so gradually that before I knew it I was living a life that was not in obedience to God. I somehow believed that because I went to church and had tried to keep the rules that I should be given all that I desired. Money, friends, relationships. I was looking for comfort in earthly treasures.

I lived my life with this attitude for several years, and found myself growing more and more depressed with the way things were going. I kept wondering why God wasn’t doing what I thought He ought to do – I was trying to get by in my own strength. I made a lot of really bad decisions during this period, and it took me a long time to realise that things weren’t really working out. It took me even longer to realise that the fault was with me and not with God.

By trying to be good and obey God in my own strength I had developed a very bad attitude. Because I was doing certain things for God I thought God was obligated to do certain things for me. Things came to a head when I was in my early 20’s. It had been several years since I had felt really close to God. I still believed in God, still went to church, still knew that I was a sinner saved by grace. Despite knowing all this I was caught in a spiral of self gratification. Things reached a low ebb and I finally cried out to God and asked Him to show me a way out of this cycle.

He did just that. Through the preaching on Sundays, reading the Bible and speaking to God in prayer, God led me out of the mess I had made, and showed me a better way. He showed me the freedom that can be found in seeking to live for Him. My goodness doesn’t depend on the good things that I do, it is the perfect life Jesus lived and in Jesus’ death and resurrection. I am freed from bondage to sin and free to live for God. It is by God’s love and grace toward me that I am able to please Him. Because my Salvation is in Jesus I know that I am eternally secure and will see Him face to face when I die and go to Heaven.

Proverbs 3:5&6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will make strait your paths.”

 Ephesians 2:8&9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not the result of works, so that no one may boast.”