would you do if you woke up one morning and realized that everything
you've been taught, everything you've known, everything you've thought
was truth was not. As a
matter of fact, everything was a lie. And this lie was taught to you by the people you love most in the
world, your parents. This
has been what has been revealed to me over the last few years of my
see, I grew up in a religion that claimed to be God's sole channel of
communication to mankind on Earth. And everything pointed to us
being right. In our religion we were taught not to smoke, not to
drink too much, not to do anything contrary to the Ten Commandments.
We were a religious people, and after all weren't we the ones that went
out and preached the good news from door to door like Jesus taught.
were taught that we were God's happy people. We were the chosen
ones and every other church was "of the Devil", Babylon the
Great, the world empire of false religion. We were really special.
This was evident by how we didn't salute the flag, sing Oh Canada, or
celebrate pagan holidays. We were taught the cross was evil and
that's why all the churches had them in them and on them. This
would make us cringe as young people. From the time we were little
we were taught to hate the cross, and to fear them and anything to do
with false religion.
thought, if we are so right, and we are GOD's happy people, where was
this joy? Where was this peace? In my own home my parents
were never happy. They fought continuously, and I remember I would
scream at the top of my lungs "Stop, Mommy and Daddy", and I
would run into my bedroom and cry. I would beg Jehovah to make
them stop. I remember praying that He would make them split up to
stop the fighting. I was desperate. I just couldn't see how
this was the truth when my Mom and Dad had no victory over this.
And when the church leaders would counsel them, they would just say,
"You need to get out to more meetings, and you need to get out in
the field service more". So they would, but nothing changed.
I grew more and more bitter as the years went by.
was getting more and more depressed with this life that was so messed
up. I would take a bottle of my parents' booze and go and sit on
the edge of the cliffs and look out at the lake with its beautiful
colors and think, "oh GOD, why me'? Why does everyone else have nice
lives but me, why is my life so unstable, so crazy?" So I would talk to
the GOD who I wasn't sure was out there, and if he was, he sure didn't
found that drinking helped me to cope with my pain, temporarily.
It numbed my brain. I could escape for a while. Then I
started doing drugs, like pot and LSD. Then I really escaped to
far away lands and tried to escape from reality. One night I took
acid with my boyfriend at the time who wanted to be Nazi. He hung
around with some people that were, from the looks of them, pretty hard
core hate mongers. There was this little sixteen-year-old girl
doing LSD with people that loved Hitler. One man looked like a two
hundred pound Hitler. He had the Hitler mustache and a swastika
tattoo on his arm. That night I came under demonic attack so
strong that I cried out to GOD all night, begging Him to spare my life
and my sanity. It was a night of living hell on earth.
sent me back to church when GOD spared my life and I was going to do it
right this time. No more drugs, no more partying, no more
skin-head boyfriends. I would straighten out my life and be a good
Jehovah Witness. However, I heard things at the meetings that I
could never believe, so I tried and tried, but it was no use, I couldn't
believe this. Therefore, I kind of made up my own religion.
There was a GOD, there was no hell. The Bible was maybe partly
true, but church was boring and only hypocrites go there. Then I
met a guy that really caught my eye. He was not bad looking, he
partied, and drove a really nice white Trans Am. All the
prerequisites of good husband material, or so I thought. He asked
me to live with him at his Dad's house, so I moved in quite swiftly.
This way I could have the freedom from the Jehovah Witnesses I so longed
for. However, I ended up spending 2 years looking after this man
and his father. Not too much freedom there. I still had this
hunger in my heart for GOD though. I remember laying hung over and
listening to the church bells Sunday morning, and longing to go to
church, just out of curiosity. I said to my fiancÚ whoever bought
me the ring he promised, "We should go to church some
morning". He looked at me like I was nuts and said "Have
you lost it?" I would try and talk about GOD with him. He
would only say that he believed in hell, and it was the Bermuda
Triangle. That was what he believed, and he was sticking to it.
I gave up even trying to talk about GOD.
don't know why, but I cared very deeply for this person and stayed with
him, even though he was extremely physically abusive. After 2
years of trying to make it work, I beat him up and left. There I
was, I had just paid back the one who I loved by beating him up, and I
was proud. I was quite a huckster and I had proven it by beating
on the one who I was wanting to spend the rest of my life with. I
bragged about it to all my friends, how held got what he had coming, and
I really showed him. But inside, I was dying. My heart
ached, my mind was fried and I hated men. They were all rotten
jerks and should be treated like the scoundrels that they are.
There I was at home again, hating men, going back to the Kingdom Hall
(only for appearances) and bitter with life, and very bitter towards
started into the next year of my life in a downward spiral that was so
dark and so depraved that I find it hard to go there. I was
miserable. I was the woman at the well. I was hurting so
much I was like a song I used to listen to,"Just two lost souls
living in a fish bowl", only I was the only fish in my bowl.
And I just wanted to float to the top and disappear.
a state of desperation I cried out "GOD, if you are really there,
please send me someone who really knows who you are, man or woman, I
don't care, just a friend who can show me who you are".
WEEKS LATER... In walked into the room Mike Antonio. "You are
Italian!" I could tell he was. No one who's not Italian is
that handsome. But it was more than looks that caught my eye with
this man. It was this kindness in his eyes I was not familiar
with. It was Jesus I was seeing in his eyes, but I didn't know it
at the time. Such love. He asked me out to a church in
London. This church was different than anything I had ever seen.
The people really looked as though they wore actually getting through to
GOD. 'I was amazed at how they would lift their hands in the air
to GOD, some were crying, some were kneeling before the altar.
thought, "This is completely wacky. What is with these
people?" Secretly I longed for what they had. I was singing
songs to JESUS and to the Holy Spirit. I had this amazing love for
JESUS in my heart. I thought, "This is wrong", but my
heart felt so good lifting up His name. I basically didn't know
the Bible well enough to know that what I was doing was more than just
OK, it was necessary, because the Bible says some day "Every knee
will bow to Jesus, every tongue will confess that HE IS LORD".
But I didn't know that.
one day I did the unthinkable, according to the religion that I had been
raised with, I asked JESUS into my heart, and to be my Lord and Savior.
I wasn't sure what all that meant, but my heart was somehow touched by
the love of JESUS. I would say "I could feel HIS love for me
in my heart". But my Dad said, "It's all emotionalism.
It's not real. There's more to it than that!" I started to
question what had happened. However, JESUS had a plan for my life.
He had brought me this far, He" wouldn't let me go now... I started
listening to Mike as he discussed the Bible with my parents.
day as we were discussing who JESUS was, Mike quoted a Scripture.
It said "When GOD brings His firstborn into the world He says 'let
all GOD's angels worship him"'. That Scripture penetrated-my
heart so powerfully, I thought, "Wait a minute, JESUS is to be
worshipped. What! How can this be?" As Mike showed me
Scriptures about JESUS, I found out He was worshipped all the time by
people in the Bible. He never rebuked them. He never said
"Get up", or "Don't worship me. I am a fellow
servant," like any of the angels or people in the Bible who anyone
tried to worship. JESUS always gladly accepted worship. This
could only mean one thing. He was GOD. I had to confront the
fact that I had been ripped off of the truth about JESUS. And the
more I researched into my former religion, I found lie after lie after
lie. Everything I had known to be true, everything I had been
taught to be true, was in fact a lie. I was at a crossroads.
And I had a lot on the line.
I stand for JESUS I may be labeled an apostate. I may lose my
family. I may lose my friends I've grown up with who are like
family. I had a choice, deny JESUS, or risk losing my family.
you may say, "that's easy, of course you pick Jesus." It
wasn't that easy at all. I still had an attachment to my parents.
I was still struggling with alcohol and my heart was being torn in two.
But JESUS was there. He walked me through. I found out that
He is a suffering GOD and He suffers right along side of me. He
has sent me His Comforter, the Holy Spirit, and has promised to never
leave me or forsake me. He has given me strength to overcome
alcohol addiction. It wasn't easy. I had to put my hand to
the plow. But it was His strength. And the Scripture that
says "Surely He carried our sorrows", that is what He does.
He carries us through the valleys.
there is nothing like a personal relationship with JESUS. I am
getting to know Him more and more every day. And I'm living proof
of His great mercy. If HE can forgive me, the chief of sinners,
His arms are open wide to you too. He loves you. He desires
you to know Him, to be intimate with Him, to seek HIS face, to bask in
HIS presence, to grow in the knowledge of HIS love and grace, - and to
behold HIM as the great I AM, the Alpha and Omega, the First and the
Last, the King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Almighty GOD, Everlasting Father
I, Prince of Peace, Emmanuel (GOD with us), Our Rock, Our Great GOD and
Savior JESUS CHRIST.
how great Thou art.
quickly Lord Jesus.