FROM THE UNIMAGINABLE...
TO THE EXTRAORDINARY
Jesus Did It!
By: Mino PavlicIf there was one thing throughout my life that I actually believed in, it was " bad luck", as I've definitely had my share of it , however what I'm about to tell you, if you're willing to listen, may change the direction of your life forever, and the testimony of my own extraordinary night and day differences should be enough to convince you that, if you're truly sincere, there is a way out, and it's all about Jesus! At fifty-two years of age , five years ago the bible was just another book to me, and Jesus was a fantasy of the imagination, now they are my sustaining lifelines !!! So to answer your question...why would I now tell you about the transforming grace of Jesus, rest assuredly, I will never forget where I came from, as my soul and life has literally been drenched in human suffering, as it played itself out in the very pits of hell. I don't care how weak you may think you are in mind and body, when you call upon the strength of Jesus, regardless of what Satan has thrown your way, you will prove to be of superior power.
We seldom, if ever consider the heights we could reach, but having tried everything else, and rather than just giving up on yourself, allow God to control your every step and believe me when I tell you, that by the merits of Jesus Christ, you would be lifted out of your depraved state and made more precious that any treasure. How can I be so sure... I have went from crippling impossibilities, to living realities!!! The main purpose behind any form of miracle was to get people to understand that God had something He wanted to say...
With God all things are possible--Matthew 19:26
Never within my sorrowful life was there anything that would substantiate my being a man of great wisdom, nor was there any indication that my life was destined for anything other that misery and suffering, as within its first forty years, it had certainly played itself out in the pits of hell. Of my own resources I could never, ever have changed the course of my destructive life, although without unquestionable dispute, I am a living testimony that our Lord Jesus does in fact hear our cry of help, and it does not matter whether this plea was one of faith or unbelief, as the two walk hand in hand. As long you allow yourself to be molded by the Grace of the Holy Spirit, God will heal and restore all the broken pockets of your life to heights greater than their original state. My own perception of my very existence could be tragically summed up within the following metaphor:
"For a moment, try to imagine during the beginning stages of your life being abandoned in the middle of a raging sea, left alone without the benefit of even a life preserver. Each of my years had brought its own thundering wave crashing down upon me, threatening to swallow me in its darkest depth. With an unexplainable willpower, I battled each treacherous wave. In reaching its peak and briefly catching my breath, as I aimlessly drifted into the next unknown valley. I'm once again drawn into an unrestrained despair, longing for my life to end, as on the horizon I see the next hideous wave approaching with a terrifying ferociousness. Through many years of painful reflection, I've come to understand with a clearer appreciation, that something far greater than anything within myself, had not only kept me afloat, but instilled within me a persistent and determined desire to rise above anything life had to offer."
Throughout my life there always seemed to be a great instability, as a direct result of parental abandonment, as my they placed their own selfish wants and need above that of their children. As a result, a deep rooted dysfunctional insecurity ingrained itself into my personality. At fifteen years old, I began my thirty-five year battle with chronic alcoholism. One year later I embarked on a life of crime, prison survival, and violence that spanned the next twenty years, of which fourteen were spent in various prisons across Canada. At twenty-nine years of age, I became a narcotic drug addict, which I battled for twelve years. If such a life wasn't in itself enough to drive you to the brink of insanity, buckle your seat belt, as it gets worse. In 1995, as a result of my addictions and unpredictability, I was told that I had contracted the deadly HIV infection, and that my life would be very short-lived. Twelve years have now passed since that devastating diagnosis, and as I am writing these very powerful words,without any hesitancy, beyond a shadow of a doubt, or a murmur of uncertainty, I know that Jesus Himself delivered me to Emmanuel Pentecostal church to be baptized in His name!!! Yes the reality clearly now exists within my mind, that my life before its conception, to this very moment in time, had been pre-orchestrated for a specific and meaningful purpose.
God, whose very breath and word created the universe, just as He spoke to Abram in Genesis 12:2-3, "And I will make of thee a great nation and I will bless thee, and make thy name great, and thou shalt be a blessing..." These same promises have always been available to any of us... Within the shipwreck of my life, you could have never convinced me that my name could possibly be great, or that I would be a blessing to anyone. However, to me these words go beyond human expression, and should eternally be a tender endearment, inscribed upon our hearts. Each time I read them the indestructible nature and resilient power of God's own spoken words leap in a thunderous roar from the page, embracing my soul within a merciful reminder of His amazing Sovereignty...No one but God could make such a promise, no one but God Almighty could deliver such a promise, but more importantly, no one but God Himself could enforce such a promise.
Luke 18:27..."The things which are impossible with men are possible with God."
The Apostles of the Bible introduced an era of revelation, although before they could become spokesmen within their written words, God had to first authenticate them as such. He gave them the power to do supernatural things in order that people might know that these men were of God, and that they spoke the truth. When I talk of miracles, its not about parting the Red Sea, then again when you take thirty-five years of horrific alcoholism, and just wake up one day and have that noose completely taken away, its a miracle of divine proportions. By itself, this could perhaps be dismissed as lucky. However, when you add to that clean slate twenty-five years of ingrained criminality, the incarcerations which were like my second home, the drug addiction and the incurable HIV infection, all wiped clean as though they never existed, washed clean by the blood of Jesus!!! When your heart meditates upon God, you will remain victorious, for no evil can destroy your peace, as all the promises of God's written word, all the power of His divine grace, and all of heaven itself are pledged to secure your deliverance, I don't need any authentication to realize that God within His glory is using the circumstances of my shattered and tormented life as a further means of restoring the blind to sight...
The first time I entered a church, for the longest time it sounded as though the preacher was trying to sell me an elusive map, which I definitely now know is not the case. It's only when you first look deep within yourself, that you'll come to understand that all those night and day differences within your own life, are the map he's talking about, and that you within their definitions, are the immeasurable treasure. Once fully explored, the possibilities of the unknown will be awakened, and you too will begin to realize the unlimited realities within the world of the impossible. It's there that you'll begin to find that undeniable faith. The Bible reveals our true nature, for as clearly stated in Romans 3:10 and 23: "There are none righteous, no not one...For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." We have all broken God's laws and have not even done the best we can...Jesus came to not only bring us a new life, but by His example show us how to have it. In John 10:10 Jesus Himself said..."I am come that they might have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." When you receive the life that only Jesus can give you, that is what being born again is all about.
The first great truth you must open your eyes to, are found in the words of the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 6:11-12. "Put on the whole Armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." An undeniable fact, these words come from the greatest champion religion has ever known, yet his own life's journey began as its fiercest opponent, his sole purpose was to extinguish any and all existence of religion from the face of the planet.
From the moment God stopped Paul on the Damascus Road, his life was transformed by Grace instantaneously; he went from a murderous persecutor, to that of a meekly priest. His eyes had finally been opened to the deceptions played upon humanity. His message is very clear, there's a war going on, and it's got nothing to do with the things that are seen, but rather the unseen Spiritual warfare, that's been going on from the moment Satan was cast out of Heaven. He introduced sin, and don't be fooled, sin will and has taken us places we've never dreamed of!!! By sin we are lured into a captivity unimaginable, by which Satan continues to rob us of our Christian experience, as his greatest fear is that we should realize the greatness we were destined for, as we were created in the image of God...
Jesus Himself was Divinity manifested in the flesh; He came to give us back what Satan had stolen, our immortal crown of eternity. Just before He died on that cross for us, His words were meant as a final clue and warning against Satan's deceptions. Imagine in view of all the miracles He performed, and after He was persecuted, mocked, tortured and hung on a cross to die, which by the way He predicted!!! Speaking directly to the Father in heaven He said, "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do." (Luke 23:34) Jesus alone understood how man, throughout the ages, had been deceived into murmuring against God, and was filled with clouds of unbelief. So great, cunning and alluring was this deception that it collectively blinded not ten, a thousand, or ten thousand people, but rather a whole nation. Having been miraculously freed from hundreds of years of oppressed bondage, delivered to safety through the parted Red Sea into the promised land, they still rebelled against God. They understandably had a hard time in trusting things unseen or unknown...
As a result, God manifested Himself in the flesh as Jesus and came to dwell with us, so that we could not only find, but make peace with God...you decide for yourself. The religious establishment of His day refused to believe that He was the son of God, yet as He had predicted His own death, burial and resurrection, they went to a lot of trouble in disproving His claims. First they made sure He was dead on that cross , then placed Him in a tomb with a two thousand pound rock sealing off the entrance. As an extra precaution, they then had teams of Roman soldiers guarding the tomb around the clock, on the threat of death, should someone steal the body. What do you think they're response was on the third day when the stone had been rolled away, and all that remained in the tomb, neatly folded were the clothes that Jesus had been buried in? They didn't send out any search party, or raise a big stink, for in their hearts they knew that they had crucified God in the flesh. When He arose from that grave, He triumphed over all sin and death itself.
Firstly, its only through reflection of our own tragic lives, that the beginning stages of being born again as described by Jesus begin..."Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God...Ye must be born again." (John 3:3;7) Before we can grasp the significance of these words, we must first understand that as a result of our present condition, we are alienated from the life of God, as not having a life, and as stated in Ephesians 2:1 and again in 4:18, just as a body without physical life is declared dead, so then is any person separated from the life of God described as spiritually dead.
When you call upon Jesus in true repentance, the everlasting arms of heaven will embrace your soul, as angels will be by your side. You too now can have total freedom from all bondage and it's found in the following passage:"Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remissions of sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." (Acts 2:38)
Faith in its most simplistic nature has always been within our grasp, and the key to unlocking its mystery lies within these very words: "In order to have a faith, you must first have a belief; to have a belief there must first be an acknowledgement of a higher power, some supernatural force greater than yourself, guiding the very steps of your life, and there's only one way of grasping that acknowledgement. Our most painful journey, which I just cannot stress enough will be that one of internal reflection, especially more so in terms of a destructive life, for it's there that the very foundations of change or growth of any kind must first begin. It's when you look to those however brief, yet extraordinary night and day differences within your own life, that you will begin to understand that it's in those moments that the spiritual world meets the physical..."
I have faced many obstacles throughout my life, and none of it until I looked back in reflection mattered! Not the twenty-five years of criminality, not the fourteen years I spent in prison, nor the thirty-five years of alcoholism, or the twelve years within a narcotic drug addiction. All of this made my life very complicated; however, to understand the true nature of unimpenetrable and seemingly irreversible hardships, add to the already incomprehensible horrors of my life, the devastating and incurable HIV infection, which on three separate occasions, having come out of remission, threatened to extinguish my very life. And then you begin to understand, that in light of everything, even if I had wanted to change the course of my destructive life, in itself proved to be a human impossibility! Of my own understanding, it was never a question of how I was going to turn my life around, but rather where would it end! I have truly been blessed with a new heart, which is to have a new mind, new purposes and new motives, however, the most noticeable sign of a new heart, is a changed life!
"The Lord shall deliver me from every evil work." (2 Timothy 4: 18)
Nothing mattered more than trying to understand the Why, or more specifically, what had for most of my life, left me colder than that iceberg that sank the Titanic. Definitely through my writing, but more so within the struggles of positive changes, that in themselves can only be attributed to that of Divine Intervention from which I have faced and came to terms with my most paralyzing fears, unraveling the mysteries of my tormented life. In order to truly understand the why, one must first fully explore the often painful, yet complicated paradoxes between our tormented yesterdays, combined with the struggles of today, for it's within our past and present that we will find the answers to a more successful tomorrow.
The powerful transformations within God's Majestic molding process began in 1997, my fortieth year. It was a time when my life had literally lost all its meaning, and it was while in serious thoughts of self extinction, that I had somehow for the first time found the courage to ask God for a miracle. It's very strange that I would make such a request, as I had never throughout embraced a true faith or belief, and wasn't sure if I was even capable of ever doing this, as within my life there never existed a hope that could have been extinguished. Almost from my birth, my mind had been a continual habitation of one demon or another, where the very real powers and principalities of darkness themselves have manipulated my life like a puppet on a string.
It has only been through deep reflection, while exploring the complicated and entwined paradoxes that made up my life, between the issues of right and wrong, to distinguishing reality from the painted illusions I had created within this complex puzzle which represented my mind, that the evidence clearly now in my mind manifests itself. Christ within the helplessness of my circumstances had patiently carried me, and it did not matter whether it was in faith or unbelief, He was waiting for my cry of help, which would ignite that unknown spark of hope with a fierce and persistent determination.
In the Bible, the Book of Ezekiel, chapter thirty-seven tells about a valley full of dry bones, where God himself tells Ezekiel if he believes whether, He, the Lord God can bring those bones back to life!!! Our very own lives, whether viewed through the hardships of our circumstances, or through those suffocating nooses of crippling addictions and devastating illnesses, represent that very same valley of dry bones. The questions we must often find ourselves in need of an answer are: Can our faith allow us to believe that God can restore our dry bones back to life? Where does this faith come and how does one get it?! Rest assured, entertaining the reality of God within your life, is not an exercise of futility! How can I be sure of this? From that very moment ten years ago, in my own brokenness and unbelief when I called upon the Lord, God has miraculously blessed my life many times, while continuously tapping me on the shoulder trying to capture my attention, and until a year ago, I didn't even know it.
As with anything in this life,
nothing comes easy, to be successful there is a progression of events within
that process, and this as well includes entering the
Throughout my life all the signs of divine intervention had always been present, from crippling addictions, to the night and day differences of positive changes. Amidst it all, I walked within the shadows of death itself, where failure almost always appeared as a welcomed luxury, as I continually wrestled with the incurable, yet devastating hardship of the HIV infection, which threatened on many fronts to extinguish my very life. Whether I was in search of this faith, or inadvertently running away from it, ten long years had passed before I was to grasp the significance, and very reverence of divine intervention, and the role it has played in my life. This supernatural, yet mystical force that in its Supremacy, as I've now come to understand and accept, is that God on the Throne had not abandoned me, but instead embraced me within His merciful tenderness, and continued within His graceful beauty, to transform a life that was all but lost...
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"And this gospel of
the kingdom [Jesus
died for sinners] shall be preached in all the world for a
witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."
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