During a vacation in Spain back in 1994 I was inspired to pray to the Lord due to the consistent pressure of personal trouble and a feeling of utter emptiness in my heart. I was a person who never had many friends and I never felt accepted in social gatherings at school or other places. Therefore I was acquainted with the dreary impression of loneliness and rejection.
At that time I wasn't saved nor had any knowledge of the Scriptures. I realized that I had no peace in my heart, so while I was alone in the hotel room in Spain I began to pray to God. In this prayer I poured out my heart to Him and expressed my desire to learn about the Christian life and what I must do to be a Christian. I must emphasize again that' back then I had no under-standing of the Bible and the work of Jesus.
Now I began to seek the Lord with all of my heart and I am convinced that God helped me during this time. A number of some influential coincidences occurred after returning home from Spain. I became familiar with Worldwide Christian Radio - an international radio station from Nashville, Tennessee - and I started listening to their programs regularly. Just by accident 1 met a group of young Christians in a shopping mall in the city of Cologne. They explained to me some of the plan of salvation and encouraged me to read the Bible. More and more I desired to study God's Word, but it was still very difficult for me to really understand what the Bible had to say. I also began to pray regularly. But I was never sure whether I was saved or not. I was frill of doubts. I still felt convicted as a sinner. I had so many questions about Christian faith, but there was nobody who could answer me. Moreover, I discovered that a large number of radio preachers on Worldwide Christian Radio preached contradicting and vague doctrines concerning salvation, which added to my doubts.
I asked myself what I must do to have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus? How do I know, for sure that I am saved? These questions continued to puzzle my mind. I have to emphasize that I didn't know any other Christians in Germany who could help me in this struggle. I live in a part of Germany that is mainly Catholic. Germany is characterized by spiritual apostasy. Most people have no respect for the Bible and they don't care about what Jesus has done. So if I had asked other people to help me understand about the plan of salvation and the wonderful work of Jesus, they sure would have laughed me to scorn. Even Germany's government supported Protestant churches (Lutheran) have no evangelical statement of faith and they no longer support a Biblical worldview.
But during this time of doubting there was another coincidence God brought into my life. One day I turned on the TV and to my surprise there was a news report by a very liberal news magazine about Baptist churches in Tennessee. While the news report slanderously accused Baptists as being "anachronistic", "bigoted" and "prude", I discovered that those Baptist people honestly and actively obeyed the Word of God. Since I was so positively impressed by the simple and pure faith of those Baptist people - being so viciously vilified by our German news journalists - I tried to listen to Baptist radio programs on Worldwide Christian Radio. The one program that touched me the most was Bro. Eugene Brown's "Words of Hope"-program. Through his preaching I realized that it takes simple, childlike faith in Jesus Christ to be saved and that we do NOT earn our salvation by good works. I also realized that repentance and faith were essential to receive God's gift of salvation by grace. Brother Brown usually ends his radio message with an invitation to say a word of prayer with him. That was important for me because by our prayers we express our dependence upon God. Humble prayer is worth so much more than the pride of theological knowledge. It was during one of those prayers that I felt a change. John 3:16 was the verse of Scripture that was continually on my mind. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."It was such a wonderful joy when I realized that this promise was for ME. I have this wonderful promise because Christ went to Calvary to pay with His own blood for me can not tell how it really happened, but I realized that my doubts and the feeling of being convicted of sin were gone. Suddenly I felt the burning desire to tell others about Jesus, the forgiveness of sin and His sacrifice on the cross. I never had this feeling before. Like never before in my life I had a hunger for God's Word. At this time I began to study the Scriptures daily (Acts 17:11). Many of my habits and opinions changed in a short time (Ephesians 4:22, 23, Romans12:2). All this happened during the spring of 1995.
Finally, I want to say that since my New Birth through God's wonderful grace, Jesus has been a friend to me "that sticketh closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24). We are always reminded that Jesus loves us. How do we know? 'He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself... (1. John 5:10)," "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God."
In my life as a Christian I received encouragement and strength by many other dedicated Christians. But to make my testimony complete I have to mention that during my walk with God I received continual edification through the correspondence with Sister Estelene Sloan of Mount Tabor Old-Fashioned Missionary Baptist Church. She encouraged me to come to America and get baptized. I am greatly thankful to the Lord that we met each other in person for the first time at McFerrin Missionary Baptist Church on March29 1998 on the day of my baptism.
April 18, 1998
Back to Testimonies & Stories