post your testimony

Ive posted mine a couple of times before. But If you feel comfortable doing so, Im curious about my HG bros and sisters, and how they got to be where they are spiritually..

So regardless of your religion, tell me how you found your faith...whatever that is you have faith in...Jesus, God, Allah, Shiva, Science...I'd like to hear about your spiritual journeys.

I've posted this article before, but I still get lots of email about it: Got Flow?SCRAP

thanks guys =) ttt for anyone else who wants to share. Im really intrested.

Scrap

your story is very inspiring. Im very glad that you've been able to separate yourself from the worthlessness that you felt was part of you. I myself had a long struggle with it, and I always love to hear about other peoples successes with this. :)

I'll give you the super mega summarized version. I was a misfit youth, a friend invited to his church, I met the crazy but cool Youth Leader, I started hanging out with the youth, made some friends, talked alot about life/meaning/love/fitting in/acceptance/personal struggles/etc. Gained some killer relationships, found Christ was at the head of all this, started responding to Him, fell in love w/Him. Relationship w/Him was beyond description. Looked back once... ONCE!

Currently? See sherms thread on what Jesus is to you?





Puzzled

Thanks Josh. Once the illusion of "I am my mistakes!" is broken life becomes a bit easier. There is a freedom to actually take risks and accept the outcome, no matter what it is.

The biggest point for me is that if I see that I am not my mistakes, neither is anyone else. It makes it much easier to extend compassion towards others and understand where they are coming from.

My $.02

SCRAP

agreed.

I posted mine on Donna's thread..Question for revrends

yours in Christ

sherm

ttt will do later.

I was never a real troublemaker just a quiet shy kid. My parents divorced when I was about 6 or so. We were not much of a church going family except on holidays or when ever someone felt like getting up. After my parents split my mom remarried and my sister and I moved in with our new step-dad. My dad had us on the weekends and he would take us to church. Once me and my sister started getting around 12 or 13ish are visitation became every other weekend so not much church.

About the time high school came around I don't even think I was going to church with my dad anymore. I started working and would have to work Sundays and just started getting a life of my own which did not leave much time for my dad or God.

To shorten a boring story high school was party time. I was like that up until I was about 22 or so. I caused my fair share of trouble such as shoplifting, fraud, blowing up mailboxes, pregnancy scare, you know the usual stuff. Life was pretty good I had alot of fun.

A couple times a year my Aunts church would have friend day and I would go with her on those days and that is about it. She never gave up on me and would invite me every time she seen me. I did not go to church much though because I was usually out late on Saturday nights. As I am getting in my late teens and early 20's my mom and step dad's marriage is about to fall apart as well as everything around me. My step dad is and was a great guy who I will always respect but he kind of lacked in the common sense department. He was a simple country boy/construction worker kinda guy.

Most people by now are wondering why haven't I moved out of my mom and step dads house. I don't know what kept me there except for God's timing. I was always kind of like the middleman in their arguments. I seemed to be the only one with some sense of reason sometimes. Anyway after a really bad fight between my mom and step dad my mom was staying at my Aunt Glenda's house. This is a Friday night and the fellas are wanting to go out and for some reason I just kind of took a little longer getting ready and didn't go out. Thank the Lord that I did not go. While my mom was at my aunt Glenda's house who was away on work my mother tried taking her own life by taking sleeping and nerve pills.

One of the hardest things to deal with in this situation is she told my step dad she was gonna do it and was making comments like when they "pick me up in a body bag" and shaking the pill bottles in the phone. So after all this I knew she was for real. I immedialty called my other Aunt (the one who always invited me to church) and told her the story and if she could meet me at the house because she lives about 5 mins away I was about 30 mins away. Needless to say instead of meeting her at the house I met her at the emergency room. The hospital managed to save her and remove the pills she had taken from her stomach.

It was after all that, that I really started realizing what life is really about. A year or two after that I finally started giving God a chance. I began to realize that I was not giving God a chance but that he was giving me a chance. The pastor had an altar call at one of the services I was at and I went down to the front and gave my heart to God. It was an amazing experience.

Wow that is the first time i have ever put those thoughts on paper or computer. However I dont think my life has been as hard as its been since i became a Christian. So if any one thinks Christians have better lives when they become one you are dead wrong. The tv preachers are full of crap I have had more drama/problems in my life in the last 3 or 4 years than in my whole freakin life.

However with Gods help my struggles have been like the
Foot Prints in the Sand poem. God has always carried and helped me along.

thats a great testimony bro. Thanks for sharing it with us. Im glad you put it on paper...

I would not say it is a testemony, but here you have how I found Spiritism.

I was raised Catholic. Hummm... quite so. Most Brazilians are like me: non practitioner catholics. We are baptized, take the first communion, go to marriages and funerals, and that´s all. It means that our religious culture is built more on the typical catholic superstitions about saints, mortal sins, heaven, purgatory and hell, than really paying attention to Jesus or what life is about.

Anyway, I had to study to take the first communion. There was a good instructor. I learnt the Ten Commandments, and I thought they were fair. But then they told me about the Church´s commandments, and I could not agree... If God is everywhere, why do I have to go to the mass? It didn´t make sense to me.

Meanwhile, despite the fact that I was attracted to religion, my parents would not incentivate me. So I stoped going to the mass.

When I was 16 I met Richard Bach´s "Jonathan Livingstone Seagul". That was a great experience. Always learning, always evolving, developing your own skills and later coming back to teach those who you left behind, that was fantastic. But since that book was treated like fiction, I thought I was the only crazy person in this world that believed in such ideas. And what do you know when you are 16? Anyhow, those ideas fell deep inside my soul.

I was 21 when I left home. A time of dispair. Unemployed and alone, I almost quit believing in God. Some small miracles, like kind gestures from strange people helping me when I was needing, gave me some hope to move on.

I found a place to stay. The two sisters told me I´d better look for a religion, since I was lost, and they introduced me to neighbor that could talk to spirits. Umbanda is the name of that religion, a mix between african cults and catholicism. I decided to give it a chance, since my grandmother was an umbandist too (my mother never allowed her to interfere in my religious education, so I didn´t have a clue about what Umbanda was really like).

Those people helped me with their prayers, and I`m sure it made the difference. Few months later I was living in front of a big spiritist center (in the past I thought that such "voodoo" church should not be allowed to exist - how full of prejudice I was). Once I heard a friend of mine saying she would go to that center to learn Esperanto. I thought to myself "if I can study, if there is a book I can read, and I don´t need to depend on anyone to understand what it means, I´m going to learn it".

Then one day I had courage to go there, and ask what should I do to learn it. That is when they told me to read "The Spirit´s Book".

It was cheap, I bought it and read it at once. Wow! All the Richard Bach´s ideas were there! I felt I was finaly at home. There were people that believed the same thing I did, and I was not alone anymore.

I was kind of a fanatic newbie for the first four years. I read every book I could put my hands on. But reading "The Gospell according to Spiritism" though was a painful experience. I was so used to feel guilty, that to read the paraboles and understand them, and worse, understanding that I didn´t use to think or behave that way, did make me suffer. I wanted to change but I didn´t know how. I use to follow the rules all the time, and always care about other people´s feelings, but I was finaly realizing how arrogant I could sound and talk, and how it could hurt people and how they would hurt me in return. I still strugle against my bad choice of words on given circunstances.

I didn´t have to recover from drugs, alcohol or any stuff like this. I had to recover from the low self-esteem pattern I was raised.

I did have the expontaneous chances to remember some of my past lifes so I could understand the pain I was going thru, and not feel a helpless victim, but instead, a person that could work to improve my quality of life at the present.

My faith on the spiritual help is growing stronger everyday. My faith in human race relays on the distant future, though.