After much thought, I have decided to put my testimony on our website so that all who come to Rock Solid Truth can have the hope and assurance of what the Lord Jesus Christ can do for them, as he has done for me. I have been made free, free indeed.
My childhood was like many others. I was birthed out of a dysfunctional family. My father was an alcoholic and a jealous man who exercised control and dominance through fear and abuse. He abandoned our family. Even though that fear and control was a great part of him, I idolized him. He was my hero. My thinking was centered on, “If I would have been a good son, he would never have left home”. My mixed thoughts were also directed towards my mother. I began to feel that if she would have taken care of him and loved him, he would not have sought out another woman. The more I thought about it, the more my anger burned. The anger burned and turned to rage.
The rage entered into every relationship I ever had. It followed me like a plague. I remember so well the day that my father said he was coming to see me. I was living with my grandparents because my mother could not control me. My dad said he had to go to see my mom. He promised on his way back through town, he would stop and see me. I waited and waited. He never showed up. Finally, he called and said that he had to get back and wouldn’t be able to see me. I was totally crushed. My anger burned against the woman that he was living with. It was the last time that I would ever hear from or ever see my dad again. A couple of weeks later, he and the woman that he was living with had a stack on the wood burner in their room dislodge from the ceiling. They both died of asphyxiation. At the early age of 36 years, my father had passed away. I was devastated. I thought, “If I would have been good, then he would still be alive.”
Upon his death, it was like something snapped in me. My hero was gone. My knight in shining armor was gone. Everything that I cared about didn’t seem to matter anymore. He had greatly impacted my life. I felt that all I had to hold onto was my memory of him in the midst of everyone speaking badly about him. It was during that time everything in my life began to fall apart. Everything that I knew no longer meant anything to me. I blamed my mother for my father’s death and nothing she said or did made any difference to me. My anger was directed at my mother and all communication with my family was broken. No one could deal with me. I was drinking and running all night, fighting with anyone and everyone.
It seemed like there was so much anger. My anger was so intense and so out of control that no one wanted to be around me. I spent a great deal of time boxing. I learned martial arts, so that I would never have to lose a fight or be called a loser. I believed that you could control people through fear. Fear was a means by which I had learned and used to control people. By the time I was 17 year’s old, I had been kicked out of school and sent to reform school. I spent a great deal of time in jails throughout the communities that surrounded where I lived.
At 17 years of age, I was brought before a judge. He gave me a choice of prison or military service. My mother signed for me to go to the service. My path of destruction followed me into the U.S. Navy. Through boot camp, I was constantly in trouble. I refused to conform to the rigors and discipline of military life. In 1964, I was sent to Vietnam. The effects of a dysfunctional family, feeling rejected, unloved and unwanted and now experiencing war in Vietnam influenced me to continue on my path of destruction and devastation in my life.
I had become the same abusive, violent and unconcerned man my father had been. I was insensitive about the needs of others, especially those close to me. Vietnam brought a hardness that made me even more insensitive to people in my life. Quite frankly, I didn’t care if I lived or died.
Every relationship brought more heartache. I didn’t understand why I was the way I was. At the age of 25, I met my wife, Linda, whom I loved very much. In spite of that love there was an anger that burned deeper than the love that I had for her. My role in our marriage was that of abuse and control. My father’s life was now a curse in my own life.
Our first child was born in 1972. At the age of two, our daughter was diagnosed with kidney problems. She had a 50% chance of being terminal. Soon after, my wife sought the help of God and the church. She became born again. I was told that God was using my daughter to reach me. That God was using her to get me to submit to him. My anger burned toward God.
Finally, I surrendered and accepted him as my Lord and Savior in 1973. Like many other born again believers, my relationship with God was based upon the many things that I had experienced in my life. I was not able to separate the spiritual from the physical. I couldn’t discern the things that I was feeling in the physical from the things that I was not feeling in the spiritual.
I loved the Lord. I went to church. I read my bible. I became involved in everything I could. I prayed an hour or two each day. I fasted. I was a dedicated, zealous man. I totally committed my life to the Lord but all the things that I wanted to be gone in my life, things that were there before I became born again, were still there. This brought much torment to me.
I desired him to be real in my life. I began to hunger and thirst for his presence. I went through years of jumping through hoops and trying to be accepted by God. I sought after righteousness and tried to live a holy life. After my salvation, I walked in guilt and condemnation for many years. I spent a great deal of time trying to live a life that would please God.
Then one morning, bright and early, in the basement of a house, as I was seeking the presence of the Lord in preparing to preach that night in Baltimore Maryland, the Lord spoke to me and said, “ I am going to reveal myself to you.” That morning I would never have believed the revelations that he was going to bring to me. I now desire to share these revelations with those who are seeking and searching for the same truths that will make them free.
I thank the Lord Jesus Christ and my Father in heaven for the revelation of his holy word which brings the revelation of the Bread of Life and the life that now exists in me. I stand before you with none of the dysfunctional effects of my past. The war in Vietnam is as if I never participated in it. When I came into the knowledge of him, my life was transformed and renewed. I realized who he is and who I am in him.
II Peter 1:3-4 “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”
My prayer is that you now realize that the truth of God’s word can make anyone free and free indeed! My desire is for you to walk and live in this truth, also.