Thursday, October 9, 2014

Christian Testimonies (No Denomination)

These general Christian testimonies come from around the web.

“Here I was, so filled with anger and hate, and she said there was someone who really loved me. And who was it but the God of the universe! That thought just staggered me. To think that the God of the universe should love me, Bill Craig, that worm down there on that speck of dust called planet Earth! I just couldn’t take it in.
That began for me the most agonizing period of soul-searching that I’ve ever been through. I got a New Testament and read it from cover to cover. And as I did, I was absolutely captivated by the person of Jesus of Nazareth. There was a wisdom about his teaching I had never encountered before and an authenticity in his life that wasn’t characteristic of those people who claimed to be his followers in the local church I was attending. I know that I couldn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.
… Meanwhile, Sandy introduced me to other Christian students in the high school. I had never met people like this! Whatever they said about Jesus, what was undeniable was that they were living life on a plane of reality that I didn’t even dream existed, and it imparted a deep meaning and joy to their lives, which I craved.
To make a long story short, my spiritual search went on for the next six months. I attended Christian meetings; I read Christian books; I sought God in prayer. Finally, one night I just came to the end of my rope and cried out to God. I cried out all the anger and bitterness that had built up inside me, and at the same time I felt this tremendous infusion of joy, like a balloon being blown up and blown up until it was ready to burst! I remember I rushed outdoors—it was a clear, mid-western, summer night, and you could see the Milky Way stretched from horizon to horizon. As I looked up at the stars, I thought, 'God! I’ve come to know God!'
That moment changed my whole life. I had thought enough about this message during those six months to realize that if it were really the truth—really the truth—, then I could do nothing less than spend my entire life spreading this wonderful message among mankind.
For many Christians, the main difference they find in coming to know Christ is the love or the joy or the peace it brings. All of those things were thrilling for me, too. But if you were to ask me what is the main difference Christ has made in my life, without hesitation I would say, 'Meaning!' I knew the blackness, the despair, of a life lived apart from God. Knowing God suddenly brought eternal significance to my life. Now the things I do are charged with eternal meaning. Now life matters. Now every day I wake up to another day of walking with Him.”

-from "Personal Testimony of Faith", by William Lane Craig

"I was raised by a darwinist father and a feminist mother, and never went to church. I rejected Christianity as boring and the Bible as a fairy tale, although I would have said I believed in God.
...My new friend invited me to her baptism after I'd known her about a year, and I went along because it obviously meant a lot to her.
...Several people gave their testimonies that day, and as I listened, I started to feel strange inside. I could see that these people really did believe that they knew Jesus and that knowing him had changed their lives. Then the pastor spoke for a while, about the sadness in the world and how people tried to fill that gap inside with drugs, alcohol, sex, money.....but none of these things worked, which is why so many are on pills for depression. I was one of them, and I started to get tearful. He said that only Jesus could fill this emptiness, and that if anyone wanted to be blessed by Jesus, would they raise their hand. Well, this was it, my moment! I knew by now that God was talking directly to me, and I hesitated......but somehow my hand went up, I was not going to miss this. The pastor said, 'bless you,' and I was overwhelmed in that instant by the presence of God. It's hard to explain, like trying to explain how you know when you are in love, but I was filled up with joy and peace and I knew that God was there and would look after me, always. That was 7 years ago and I have not forgotten it. 
That is very detailed and very true. I was healed of my depression in that moment too."

-from Yahoo user good tree

"I have seen Jesus, he called me back to him in a vision that changed every thing I knew and believed, That's my truth.  And my first experience I have had more, but no one needs a vision to know God, he is ready for every repentant soul and needs our yes."

-from Yahoo user korban

"I wouldn't be who I am today without revelations revealed to me through the holy spirit. God has given me so much knowledge about almost anything and everything I've ever wanted to know. I don't know where to start to tell you the things I have learned and have applied to my life. I could write a book! All I know is, people that deny he exist or say he isn't good, I am simply flabbergasted by. I've experienced his mercy and grace everyday that I live. The things he's brought me through, the revelations about Heaven that he's given me, the revelations about the people on this Earth and what he's going to do, I mean, there is so much love and goodness coming to this planet from him!! If most only knew!!"

-from city-data forum user allenk893

"The altar call was made to give your heart to the Lord. I knew I wanted to. I knew I was home. I knew I was ready to make a commitment to Jesus, not to an organization, not to the church, but to give my heart to Christ.
...Now I am able to raise my hands, because I’m worshiping Him. The freedom is Christ. My spirit just came alive inside of me! God will reveal and guide and lead you into all truth. He’s the Revealer of all truth and that truth does set you free!"

-Deborah Antignano's Testimony

Raising the Dead

"I walked out through the door to this emergency room and I heard this voice say, 'Turn around and pray for this man.' I wanted to ignore that voice because I said to myself, How can I pray for that man? He’s dead he’s gone. There’s no life in him, so I keep walking. The voice came back again and said, 'Turn around and pray for that man.' I stopped and thought I need to honor the Lord. So I turned around at the doorway, and I walked to the side of the body.
...I opened my mouth and these words came out: 'Father God, I cry out for this man’s soul. If he does not know you as his Lord and Savior, Father, raise him from the dead now, in Jesus name.'
...The other doctor walked in the room and I pointed to him and said, 'Shock this man one more time.' He looked at me and said, 'Dr. Crandall, we can’t shock him. He’s dead. There’s no life in him. He’s gone.' I said, 'For me, shock him one more time.' That doctor out of respect and honor for me went over to that body with those defibrillator paddles and put his paddles on that patient and shocked him. Immediately an instant heartbeat came back. Instant perfect, regular, which we’ve never seen before.
When I came in Monday morning, Jeff was sitting up in bed, and I said, 'Where were you that day that I prayed for you in the emergency room?' And he said, 'I was in total darkness and I was so disappointed.' I said, 'Jeff, what were you disappointed about?' He said, 'I was alone for eternity.'
Jeff recalls, 'He asked me at that time if I was willing to accept God into my life and into my heart and I did. I just opened my arms and accepted God. It was just a very emotional time and I remember crying in his arms.'"

-from "Jeff Markin: Back from the Dead, Reborn Into the Light"

Conversion from Hinduism

"I was sleeping and all of a sudden I woke up. I felt like the Holy Spirit was saying, ‘Now is the time. Now is the time to come into My kingdom.’ At that point I said, ‘Lord, I accept You as my Lord and my Savior. I am Yours. Please forgive me of all my sins.’ I felt like the weight had been lifted. There was something in my spirit that… It was almost like—think of a really, really dark room. And then all of a sudden like a small crack opens up and light shines through. You just know it. The Lord is real. God is in me. The Holy Spirit is living in me.
...Jesus Christ to me is, first of all, He’s a Friend. He walks with me. He lives in me. He guides me. He’s just – He’s just amazing. He is everything I mean, when I’m down, He pulls me up.
When you earnestly seek the face of God, and you’re sincere in your seeking the face of God, God shows up."

-from "Shailesh Ghimire: Finding Jesus in America"

Conversion from Judaism and a vision

“This being appears in my dream in glory like I’ve never seen before in my life.  I’m not looking at this with my eyes.  I’m in a dream, but this is real. I don’t know how else to explain it, but I thought I was going to die in the presence of this being with eyes so bright that they were brighter than the sun. In His hand was an old looking parchment, and it had all this writing on it and I couldn’t read it. It was too small. But I knew in my spirit that it was my whole life up to that point. In the bottom in big bold letter it said, ‘IT’S TIME TO COME HOME.’”
...He prayed to receive Jesus as his Lord and Savior.
“It was like a brick house lifted off me, a dark, heavy stickiness. This is what I’ve been looking for.  I knew that all my sins had been forgiven, that I was right with God now.”

-from "Cyril Gordon: A Spiritual Journey Leads to Christ"

An ex-Christian reconverts to a more liberal version of Christianity after spiritual experiences:

"At my mom's insistence, we attended a Seventh-Day Adventist service at a different church. When she suggested it I started having a panic attack, but I said I'd go with her and dad anyway. We went. And it was.... nice. I had been suffering from anxiety for a while now, and that day felt like one of the only days I've had truly free of anxiety. The service was nice, I hung out with my boyfriend later and didn't feel bad, and it was just... good. All the troubles I had were suddenly washed away, and I thought, you know, maybe I can give Christianity a try again.
...I started reading a book called 'Kissing Fish: Christianity for People Who Don't Like Christianity' that introduced me to Progressive Christian thinking. At first, I was afraid that I was just trying to make myself feel better, that I was just trying to find a way to twist God into a mold that would make me feel more comfortable with my life choices. But in reading some of the passages in there, I began to feel the same sense of peace and acceptance that I felt on that one church service. I finally started to realize... if God truly is love, then He truly loves me, imperfect and flawed as I am. This peace that I'm feeling... I've never felt it in any other spiritual situation before. I've never felt this before. Many of the ways of thinking presented in that book about God, Jesus, and the Bible seemed to wash over me in waves of love and comfort, something that I've never felt from religion. I finally started to realize what all those Christians meant when they said they could feel God's love. I don't have to be trapped by the staunch dogmas I thought were 'true Christianity'. I felt just a little bit more free.
...I don't know what the future will hold, but for the first time, I can find comfort in trusting a God that has revealed Himself to be truly loving."

-from "Recovering Christian: There and Back Again" by reddit user malheureux_

Prophesy, Revelation, Healing by Laying on Hands

"As a young married couple starting in ministry, Robert and Stacy Gay wrestled over the decision to have a second child.  Stacy was ready. Robert was not.  'She said, ‘Lord, I just want confirmation if this is me, if this is You, or if this is something we should proceed ahead on having another child,’' Robert recalls.
The answer came shortly there after at a church conference through prophetic words. 'I didn’t get just one, not two, but three words,' he says. 'One of them was: ‘I see a baby,’ and another was: ‘I see you are about to have a child.’ The other was: ‘I see you are going to have a child, and you are going to have this child by the end of the year.’'  Stacy recalls, ’A daughter who would be a dancer in the house of the Lord...’
'Whenever I got those words, I knew,' Robert says. 'Lord this is You.'  Like many Christians, Robert and Stacy believe that God still speaks today. He often speaks through others using prophetic words. 
Robert says, 'About the end of March, we found out that Stacy was pregnant.'  But one week later…  'I began to bleed and spot very heavily,' Stacy says... 'The prognosis was that there was no life in the womb.'
'She called me on the phone and she was crying,' Robert says. ‘What are we going to do?’ ...And I said, ‘You are not going to do anything. We are going to stand, and we are going to believe the word of the Lord. The word of the Lord said we would have a daughter who would be a dancer in the house of the Lord.'
'That evening when I got home from work, I laid my hands on her stomach and said, ‘You will live and not die.’' We began to agree together, and the church began to pray. We all began to speak life to the womb, and we began to declare the prophetic word that had been spoken over our lives.'
But the bleeding continued...  Subsequent visits to the doctor brought the same dire report...  But several weeks later, the Gays received a very different report. A strong heartbeat resounded from the womb.  Eight months later, the astonished doctors delivered a perfectly normal baby girl...  For 18 years, the Gays have praised God for their beautiful dancer."

-from "Robert and Stacy Gay: The Word and the Promise"

Hearing the Voice of God

"Let me tell you about a most wonderful experience I had early Monday morning, March 19, 2007, a little after six o’clock. God actually spoke to me. There is no doubt that it was God. I heard the words in my head just as clearly as when a memory of a conversation passes across your consciousness. The words were in English, but they had about them an absolutely self-authenticating ring of truth. I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that God still speaks today.
...As I prayed and mused, suddenly it happened. God said, 'Come and see what I have done.' There was not the slightest doubt in my mind that these were the very words of God. In this very moment. At this very place in the twenty-first century, 2007, God was speaking to me with absolute authority and self-evidencing reality. I paused to let this sink in. There was a sweetness about it. Time seemed to matter little. God was near. He had me in his sights. He had something to say to me. When God draws near, hurry ceases. Time slows down.
...I was being enveloped in the love of his personal communication. The God of the universe was speaking to me.
Then he said, as clearly as any words have ever come into my mind, 'I am awesome in my deeds toward the children of man.' My heart leaped up, 'Yes, Lord! You are awesome in your deeds. Yes, to all men whether they see it or not. Yes! Now what will you show me?'
The words came again. Just as clear as before, but increasingly specific: 'I turned the sea into dry land; they passed through the river on foot. There they rejoiced in me—who rules by my might forever.' Suddenly I realized God was taking me back several thousand years to the time when he dried up the Red Sea and the Jordan River. ...God himself was narrating the mighty works of God. He was doing it for me. He was doing it with words that were resounding in my own mind.
There settled over me a wonderful reverence. A palpable peace came down. This was a holy moment and a holy corner of the world in northern Minnesota. God Almighty had come down and was giving me the stillness and the openness and the willingness to hear his very voice.
...I sat staring at nothing. My mind was full of the global glory of God. 'I keep watch over the nations.' He had said this to me. It was not just that he had said it. Yes, that is glorious. But he had said this to me. The very words of God were in my head. They were there in my head just as much as the words that I am writing at this moment are in my head. They were heard as clearly as if at this moment I recalled that my wife said, 'Come down for supper whenever you are ready.' I know those are the words of my wife. And I know these are the words of God.
...What effect did this have on me? It filled me with a fresh sense of God’s reality. It assured me more deeply that he acts in history and in our time. It strengthened my faith that he is for me and cares about me and will use his global power to watch over me. Why else would he come and tell me these things?
It has increased my love for the Bible as God’s very word, because it was through the Bible that I heard these divine words, and through the Bible I have experiences like this almost every day. The very God of the universe speaks on every page into my mind—and your mind. We hear his very words. God himself has multiplied his wondrous deeds and thoughts toward us; none can compare with him!"

-from "The Morning I Heard the Voice of God", by John Piper

Martin Luther King, Jr. hears the voice of God.  After receiving many death threats, King was heavily shaken and prayed for help.

"'Lord, I'm down here trying to do what's right. I still think I'm right. I am here taking a stand for what I believe is right. But Lord, I must confess that I'm weak now, I'm faltering. I'm losing my courage. Now, I am afraid. And I can't let the people see me like this because if they see me weak and losing my courage, they will begin to get weak. The people are looking to me for leadership, and if I stand before them without strength and courage, they too will falter. I am at the end of my powers. I have nothing left. I've come to the point where I can't face it alone.'
As he prayed alone in the silent kitchen, King heard a voice saying, 'Martin Luther, stand up for righteousness. Stand up for justice. Stand up for truth. And lo, I will be with you. Even until the end of the world.' Then King heard the voice of Jesus. 'I heard the voice of Jesus saying still to fight on. He promised never to leave me, never to leave me alone. No never alone. No never alone. He promised never to leave me, never to leave me alone.'
And as the voice washed over the stains of the wretched caller, King reached a spiritual shore beyond fear and apprehension. 'I experienced the presence of the Divine as I had never experienced Him before,' he said. 'Almost at once my fears began to go,' King said of the midnight flash of illumination and resolve. 'My uncertainty disappeared. I was ready to face anything.'"

-from, "Receiving the Call"

An ex-convict heard the voice of God

"One night in January 2007, while laying in bed praying and talking to God ... God spoke to me!  It was the very first time I've ever heard God speak to me!  God said three words to me, and the best three words I have ever heard!
God said, 'Welcome home, son.' 
I didn't know what to think!  I was scared at first, but then I started to question how could God ever welcome me home -- a sinner, lost to the world?  I have heard of God speaking to others, but ME?
I know some reading this will be skeptical that it was really God who spoke to me.  Many will just think I imagined it, or am lying about it to impress others.  That is understandable.  I'm not out to try to prove to anyone that it was really God who clearly spoke to me.  God knows the truth and I know the truth, and that is really all that matters in the end.  I believe God knew I needed to hear His voice clearly, otherwise my relationship with Him might well have continued on shaky ground.  Lord knows I sure didn't deserve to hear His voice, but because He did allow me to hear it ... it has helped me greatly to get much more serious about walking in obedience to Him.
I've since learned that God promises to speak to each of us once we become fully born again and purpose to walk in the Spirit as Romans 8 speaks of -- becoming a new creation in Christ Jesus.  He doesn't want it to be some big deal (Though it is!). It should become very common-place - very ordinary.  It may not be in any remarkable and dramatic way like the first time it happened to me ... but it certainly can be.  Often it is more of a knowing that anything else.  It's hard to describe it to anyone else at times, but you just have a knowing that it wasn't you listening to your own thoughts, but the voice of God talking to you.  God has also been known to speak in dreams and even visions, or it can be through another person.  Most often, learning how to hear His voice comes as you study the Bible with the purpose of really wanting to know everything God has to say to us in it, with a desire, of course, to obey Him as He reveals His truths to you.  That is the most common way Jesus teaches His true followers how to hear His voice."

-from, "God Spoke to Me!", by Chris Alexander

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