September 8th, 2016 marks 31 years of me being a believer in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior; also on the 21st of this past July marked the official day where I have been a believer longer than I was an unbeliever.
I wished that I was one of those who had received Christ into their lives at an early age and my testimony was how the Lord has preserved and as kept me from a lifestyle of sin, but I wasn’t.
I can’t remember the last time I gave my testimony of my past life as an active sinner, I was no minor player in sin. Even when I did tell it, there was many things that I would never speak about and I still don’t.
I do remember that when I started to write my testimony down a couple of years ago, so I could possible share it with the Church; that I had to stop and shake my head and I asked myself, “Was this really me?”
I’d been so far removed from my past, that I couldn’t recognize my old self, I no longer identified myself with that person, what I had been and all I had done.
I felt almost dirty reaching back into my past and it was almost uncomfortable for me to try and reach through the blood of Christ to remember what he had redeemed me from. I fully understand the Apostle Paul’s words, “For it is shameful even to mention what is done by them in secret. (Eph 5:12)”
I no longer, (or I try not to), tell people about my past. I don’t like giving any glory to it, it had almost become a badge of honor; you know what I mean. It almost gives honor to sin, to say how much you were a sinner; the bigger the sin, the more you try and show how saved you are or how great your testimony is.
That’s why I wished I could say I became a believer at an early age, to show not just his saving power from sin, but also his ability to protect and keep me from a lifestyle sin. I much rather hear the success stories of those who chose Christ at an early age and they through Christ stayed on the path that he laid out for them, than those of famous people or great sinners who later in life give their lives to God.
I knew a person like that, she didn’t think her testimony was all that great, because God didn’t deliver her out of some great sin or terrible lifestyle. She thought it sounded boring or uninteresting, but I had to tell it wasn’t to me; in fact, it gave me hope, I had wasted 31 years of my life and it gave me hope that someday I might be able to look back and see how God has used what is left of my life for his glory.
Don’t take me wrong, I am so grateful to the Lord for receiving me at such a late stage in my life and the time I’ve had as a believer. But I also see how I wasted 31 years. Sometimes I wonder what if, what if I had received him as a child; how much more could he have used me or what things could I have done?
So much for the “past”, it’s gone. Maybe, if the Lord is willing; I might have another 31 years to see what he will do with me now! But until then, HAPPY SPIRITUAL BIRTHDAY to me on the 8th!