Posted this week is the testimony of a student who knew all the right answers, but at the end of the day struggled with knowing if her salvation was genuine. Throughout life many can be challenged by these issues and every journey is different, but it is important that you “examine yourself in faith” as Paul instructed in 2 Corinthians 13:5. John stated “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13). If you are struggling with feelings of doubt it could be growth in sanctification (growing in holiness) or realization of salvation (deliverance from the wrath of God by trusting in Christ as your Savior), either way read God’s Word daily, pray and seek out someone of leadership in your church to help you write out your testimony and solidify that you may know. Enjoy the sweet testimony of one who no longer doubts, but is being a witness to the one she knows.
The following is a testimony By Jacquelyn
Good Morning!! I am going to start off by telling y’all what I always said my testimony was…..until this past Sunday.
I am the 8th and last child in my family and was raised in a strong and faithful Christian home. I have been taught all the Christian values & morals my entire life, along with always being involved in church and attending CHA since I was in Kindergarten. I thought I had gotten saved when I was 5 years old because of a vague memory I had in my Sunday school class at church. I then got baptized when I was 9 because my sister was getting baptized and I thought I needed to as well since all Christians are supposed to do that in obedience to the Lord.
In 7th grade I started working the bus ministry at my church and was very very involved and dedicated to that ministry until we changed churches my Sophomore year. I had, for years, spent countless hours every single week going on church visitations to invite kids to church, who almost all came from broken, sad, poor homes and who didn’t have the opportunity to have a loving home like probably all of us have.
I had always worked Vacation Bible Schools at Church in the summers, worked Bible Clubs in local neighborhoods or apartment complexes and just did what I knew were good things to do. I’ve read my Bible independently since I was in about 6th grade, I think, because I knew it was good, right and what I was always encouraged daily to do by myself. I have read so much of the Bible and I thought I knew all the right answers and ways to what I was supposed to do, act and say.
For the past several months, maybe even the last year, I have really been heavily convicted and scared because I did not know at all where I would spend my eternity. I would like to say it was in heaven but I literally just did not know. Every time it was talked about at home, church or school I just had such an uneasy feeling about it. I had never in the last 17 ½ years had a true Peace about where I would spend eternity. If it was discussed I was quick to justify that I was a Christian by the vague memory when I was 5, how I was raised, my knowledge of the Bible, my faithful involvement at church and my mentality of ‘I know what I need to do and I know that I should try and please the Lord.’ The sad thing is I knew everything I needed to do and I believed the Bible to be true so why did I never ever in my life have a calm, true, peace about eternity?
`Well about a year ago I finally told my mom I had some doubts about my salvation and she was really shocked. She was concerned for me when I had admitted that little confession to her. She talked and prayed with me and told me the true fact that most, if not all, Christians will doubt their salvation at some point and that I should pray and read the Bible more to assure that I was a Christian. We talked for a while that night about it and she thought at that moment it was Satan deceiving me into thinking I wasn’t saved because he likes to do that to Gods children to make them doubt their assurance. I, again, took that and justified my salvation even though I wasn’t saved. The Peace that I craved so much still was not in me and I wanted it so bad.
For the next several months I told myself I was fine and that I had to be a Christian because all that I had done. I even led a little girl to the Lord the summer before at a Bible Club and I had done so much work for church, school and everything!
I was so deceived by Satan and so blind by my outward works and jobs that I would never admit to anyone that I wasn’t a Christian because it wasn’t in my character.
This past Sunday after the church service, our pastor talked a little more after the message was over and told the congregation that if we weren’t 100% sure, without a shadow of a doubt positive that we were a Christian, and that if we died that day we wouldn’t go to Heaven and spend eternity with Christ then we needed to talk to him or someone that day to get things figured out. And at that point the Holy Spirit was convicting me so much that I knew when I got home I needed to talk to my mom about it.
So the 5 minute ride home with my sister, Jessica, I was pretty quiet when she asked me some random questions because I was just so deep in thought and scared that I wouldn’t ever have a peace! We got home and changed and I went to the kitchen where my mom and I were eating a snack at the counter. Meanwhile, the battle in my head, soul, and heart to speak up and admit everything, was raging hard. I was so tempted to push it off and justify my salvation once again. It was so easy to be a coward and not admit what was going on. There also was the thought in the back of my head of what will my family, friends and teachers at school or church would think when they find out I haven’t been saved all along. My life has somewhat been a “normal” good Christian-type life, so why would I need to change what I’ve been doing if it all looks good to others and they think I am a Christian. My pride was obviously not wanting to be hurt by giving my life over to the Lord and admitting my wrong doings.
My mom left the kitchen and I followed her to her room a minute later where I let it all go. I had finally broken down and told her how I had absolutely no peace and didn’t know what I was doing and where I was going. I told her of a few verses that always convicted me, Matthew 7:21-23 being the one that had haunted me the most and gave me the most fear. It says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.”
She then got my dad and we talked to him for a while about what I had been going through. He then prayed for the situation and we talked some more about what was going on and what I needed to do. I knew I needed to settle it that moment so I prayed with my mom and dad sitting on the edge of their bed. And right then in that moment I put away all my selfish pride and shame of always putting it off and justifying it by outward works and I got saved!! As all 3 of us were balling as I was crying out to my Lord and Perfect Savior I felt the most amazing, sweetest, calmest and most relieving Peace that I have ever felt! In that moment I didn’t want anything but the Lord and his rich salvation in my life. Literally, nothing else mattered. I know now that I am a daughter of the One True Perfect Everlasting King and I have never felt so loved and at peace in my life. Words cannot describe what Gods Peace feels like and I know that I will never be plucked out of His hand. I am HIS for all of eternity!
I immediately wanted to tell anyone and everyone what had just happened to me! The selfishness, pride, shame and sin of my life wasn’t even a factor anymore! I just wanted to tell others about the true unspeakable joy and the peace that surpassed all understanding. I had never been so happy, excited and speechless by the feeling that only Christ could give me. I told all my siblings, called Blythe and more of my friends that day and Monday. The excitement and encouragement I have received from everyone that I have talked to has been overwhelming. I knew they would be happy for me when they found out, but that is such an understatement! I don’t know how to put into words how much my brother and sisters in Christ have encouraged and been a light to me.
Reading the Bible and doing my quiet time has been such a joy and Gods Word has become absolutely beautiful to me! I didn’t see how alive and how truly stunning His Word was before, but now I do.
Philippians is my all-time favorite book and I could read verse after verse that are all so amazing to me, but there are a couple verses I wanted to read to you about the righteousness of Faith through Christ.
Chapter 3 vs 7-11 “But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.”
The Lord has blessed me beyond belief and I am so grateful for the amazing family he has placed me in and the wonderful school and church that I have the opportunity to grow in.
I know there may be some of you who might be in the same boat I was in, and you never have had the wonderful Peace that only Christ can give. I pray that if you haven’t had that, that you will please talk with your mom or dad, a teacher or just someone who you can talk to about this, because I promise you that it was absolutely worthless and invaluable to live 17 ½ years thinking I was a Christian. I plead with you, that today you will get it settled, because not everyone who says to Him on that day ‘Lord, Lord’ will get to spend their eternity with God. Thank you so much for allowing me to share God’s Grace in my life and I pray you have that same Peace that forever lives in me!
This testimony was given at Christian Heritage Academy.