FROM PRISON TO THE PALACE
(The William Simpson Story)
Jesus Did It!
By: William Simpson
Subtitled: Living In The Hope Of My Imagination: A Worship Journal
I write this in hopes of speaking to the people who live in that make-believe world known as their imagination. Until someone has lived here, they will never understand what it’s like to wish about the life that you see other people live, knowing that you will never experience what you think you don’t deserve. Well ... God has something different to say!
I want to thank Jesus, my Savior and my God, for reaching out to me and offering the gift of His love. When I was alone and had no hope, He embraced me. He brought healing to me and He showed me the purpose of my life.
God has chosen me for Himself, for this time, before He created the world. (Ephesians 1:4 AMP)
I am important to God, and my life has great purpose, He tells us!
If this statement is true, why then has life been so difficult for some of us? From our conception we have had no control over the events of life; they just happen. From our earliest memories we remember being hurt and the distrust of people that came as a result of the abuse. Childhood is meant to be the time when we are loved and cared for, and we learn how to trust. This beginning is what has shaped our thought process, which has determined the decisions that we have made. We did not trust, so we became distant and we never had friends. We could not fit in because we didn’t even like ourselves. How we responded to the image of who we thought we were has created the life that we have lived, because we didn’t know any better. We had no positive influence to show us the right way, and the price that we have paid for the choices we made is the loss of our innocence and youth. This was not a healthy beginning, and to our frustration this has followed us through life.
I know you who have had a beginning like mine -- we are mad at life. We feel somehow cheated and even somehow betrayed.
We have built walls so high, that not only can no one get in, we cannot get out … and it hurts. On the surface we look normal, just like everyone else, but in our imagination we are dying one painful day at a time. Memories of the physical, verbal and for some of us, sexual abuse, rejection and being alone have condemned us to the acceptance that our life has no value and we will never experience the reality of our “If only my life was like” dream world. We long for the touch of affection, a word of encouragement, a smile. It never comes. Nothing in life is what we hoped it would be, and every day has become survival.
We are so caught up in the defense of our pain that no one in their right mind wants to get involved, so we associate with the people of our environment; it’s what we are familiar with. We despise the image we have of our self, because this is the person we have become. We try to pick ourselves up only to get knocked down time and time again; always reaching for what is just beyond our grasp, so we cover up with anything that makes our emotions feel good, and use alcohol and drugs to dull the pain.
I have met so many people like me who want change, but circumstances won't allow it. We don't know who to talk to because the people in our circle of influence struggle with their own demons, and are in no position of influence to encourage and give the emotional support we need to overcome our past. We have become imprisoned to the inner image of insignificance.
My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge. (Hos. 4:6 KJV)
This was me, and many of you are at this crossroad now. You can never change the fact of what has happened in the past, but the one thing that you must do is GET OVER IT. God will help you all the way, once you’re ready totally to let Him do it His way. His way is always the wisest way and the right way.
Until you are willing to walk away from everything that you try to do to make your life right, it will remain the same. You will continue to be mad at the world living in the pain of your past; reaching out to everything that passes by with the faint hope of maybe this will make me feel better. The person, the situation or the substance may be different, but the result will always be the same. No peace, no happiness, no fulfillment, nothing, just another empty day. It's time to stand up and say "No More!"
What in your life, is more important than experiencing the reality of the peace of mind and happiness that this brings, which God has promised to you in His Word?
I am leaving you with a gift -- peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid. (Jn 14:27 NLT)
We either see ourself for who God says we are in His Word and believe it ... or we see ourself as Satan wants us to see ourself
What negative image of yourself are you not willing to give up to enjoy the feeling of self-worth and the confidence that comes to you knowing that your life has great purpose to God? To one-day look in the mirror and like the person you see? You can become the person that you hope to be, but it will take a commitment to separate from every thought process and influence that does not create a positive inner image.
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. (Pr 23:7 AMP)
This truth will work for you or it will work against you. God’s Word is filled with the answers to the questions that have escaped you for so long. I hope that in reading this you have come to the conclusion that the decisions you have made until now have been wrong, and you are ready to do the one thing that will transform your imagination.
And be constantly renewed in the spirit of your mind having a fresh mental and spiritual attitude. (Eph 4:23 AMP)
The only way this will happen is by giving your emotional attention to God in your study of the Bible -- to learn the truths in it of who you are and how you are to live.
Until now your life has been a series of events that have made you the person that you are. It’s not for you to understand or to even question why these things have happened. I believe it is for the purpose of you coming to the conclusion that you do not have control, and in making the decision to submit to God, your inner image is forever changed. Your completeness will be a process of decisions you make, that in time will dilute the negative experiences of your life to be replaced by an imagination filled with the hope of becoming the person God says you are.
For the people who know you, who have had the experiences in life like yours, there is no greater example to create hope than this. Your transformation can be a bridge for others to cross over to discover their purpose in life. There are people who need to hear what you have to say, that can only relate to you. Your life is not your own to do with what you want; there is a higher calling that you need to answer.
I had no idea what I was doing or what this would become when I began to read the New Testament, in hopes of coming to terms with God and understanding what was the purpose behind the events of my life. If God loves me as much as the Bible says He does, then why did He allow so much pain? I wanted to know. I was 37 when I made this decision, and it has taken me almost three years of reading and writing to come to the conclusions that I have made.
It's not my intent to try and be someone that I am not. I have no theological training or higher learning, and the last year of public school that I completed was the 8th grade. What I have written about, I have lived. If you are at the place in your life that I came to, and you want answers, I ask that you be receptive to what I have written, for in these words I believe you will understand the sincerity of my transformation and the bridge of hope that this could be for you. What I write here is a brief description of some of the events of my life that shaped me, and what I have experienced that has finally brought me peace.
Up until the time that I began this study I had no hope, no vision for my life and I was never happy. I was mad at God! My life had been one disappointment after another. At the age of 3 I was taken from the woman that had given birth to me because of physical abuse. I was too young to remember this and did not learn about the details until much later in life. I was adopted and lived with a family that was as dysfunctional as the one that I was taken from, and things happened.
As a child I was very distrusting of people and I stayed to myself. The area that I grew up in was rural and there was nothing to do except what mischievous children do. In school, I was in trouble just about every day, and at home because of this. I started smoking when I was seven and at the age of 10 I smoked my first joint, and I enjoyed the feeling of being able to escape. I was hooked! Every opportunity that I had to get high I did. Alcohol and narcotics soon followed, and I don't remember much over the next several years. I could never stay in school for any length of time due to fighting or just being bad. I was held back a school grade and placed in a special education class, and I hated the school environment.
At age 14 I was committed to a year of residence at a wilderness detention camp for troubled youth, and how the counselors at this place corrected me did not help my self-image. I became even more distant.
Shortly after I was released I overdosed on a combination of alcohol and drugs that nearly took my life. When I was found I was non-responsive. I woke up in the hospital, and I remember being told that had I not been found when I was and treated, I would have died.
After this I was incarcerated at a juvenile lock-down facility where I spent another year. From here I was sentenced to juvenile life and moved to an adult jail where I was kept in isolation for a year and a half, awaiting my 18th birthday and I was then transferred to the state penitentiary. Because of my youth, every time I was in the general population I had to fight to not be taken advantage of or raped, and this is where I learned how to hate.
I was in numerous fights and at 19 I was classified as a violent inmate and transferred to a maximum-security prison. It was here that I saw the worst of society and I was becoming just like them. The fear and the emotion that you feel as a young man when you enter a cell block with 130 violent men on three tiers staring at you … verbalizing the vulgar acts that they are going to do to you … cannot be described. It was at that moment that I determined to never become a victim, and if that meant spending the rest of my life in prison, I would not be raped or allow anyone to disrespect me.
I was confronted by a life-timer who told me that I would be his punk or he would kill me, and during the altercation I was stabbed five times with a shank. I bled heavily as I was being taken to the hospital, and the doctor told me that a blood clot is what kept me from bleeding to death. There were 85 staples in my chest and mid-section and numerous stitches to sew up the muscle and arteries. After a few days in isolation I was transferred to another prison where it took several months for me to heal. While here, I was in a fight and was placed in the infirmary because of my injuries. I was in this room by myself for several days and I remember thinking that if I did not change the person that I was, I would be dead in six months. I had, I thought, every right to be angry because life had never been kind to me in my youth.
This is when I began to think about the person that I had become ...
This is when I began to think about the person that I had become, and I will never forget this day: it was the first time that I cried in regret of the choices that I had made. I did not know what to do.
Looking back now, I believe there is a time in everyone’s life that God reaches out to you.
No one is able to come to me unless the Father who sent Me attracts and draws him and gives him the desire to come to me. (Jn 6:44 AMP)
This was the day of my visitation from God; the day that God ordained to be the beginning of my healing. I remember saying to myself, “I don’t know how to change,” and this is when I heard a voice say to me … “Pick up my Bible and read it.”
I sat up in the bed and looked around and there was no one in the room but me. I didn’t know what to think about this, so I ignored it.
The next day, about the same time, I heard the voice say to me again, “Pick up my Bible and read it.” This time I got out of the bed and walked to the door and looked out of the small window. The hallway was empty. I did not understand what was happening, so I sat there and thought about what this might mean.
The next day I heard a stern voice say: “I said - pick up my Bible and read it,” and just at this time the door to the infirmary opened and another inmate was escorted into the room.
He put his belongings on the bed beside me, introduced himself and asked me if I believed in God. I said, “No - but you do have my attention,” … and until the next morning when he was released to general population, we talked about God, His Son Jesus, and the gift of salvation that God would give to me if I would accept Jesus as my Savior.
Why God chose to introduce Himself to me in this way I will never truly understand, but I believe it was because I had been so scarred by life that any other person could not have spoken to me about God. I would not have been receptive.
I did not understand much of what he told me but I was captured emotionally when he said that God loved me unconditionally and accepted me for who I was. Before he left, I asked if I could have his Bible to read and he gave it to me.
I spent the next few months in lock-down and I read the Bible several times through and it was in that isolation cell that I asked God to help me change, to be a better person, and I accepted Jesus as my Savior.
I had been saved just a few days when God spoke to me again, and this time I knew that this was God. His voice came from everywhere around me. He said, “Repentance is turning away from that which you are doing,” and I responded, "I know that Lord."
I could not see any change in me physically, but when I was released to general population I responded differently, quite noticeably, and had the opportunity to lead several inmates to salvation because of the change that they saw in me.
For the next six months I read the Bible and attended every church service until my release.
It was just a few days after my 21st birthday that I was called to the front guard office and notified of my release. I signed the necessary paperwork and I walked out the door with $90.00 to my name and no place to go. I had no skills, no training of any kind and I didn’t even know how to drive a car. My adoptive parents told me that I was not welcome (and for several years I had nothing to do with them).
I quickly learned about the realities of life on the outside and how similar people were. I had spent my 15th through my 21st birthday incarcerated, and I did not know how to interact with people.
Thus the next few years were very difficult for me. I withdrew into depression. I struggled to try and find myself, and what I was supposed to do with my life, and I went through several jobs. If I did not like what was said or what was being done, I would quit and go get another job. I found that working in the restaurant industry paid me the most money and at the same time gave me the greatest access to the public to try and learn how to be sociable and get along with all of the different personalities that I would come in contact with.
Within this industry also come its demons. Working a job that promotes alcohol and familiarity with wines - it was not long until I was drinking every day. I tended bar, so I drank and drugs were everywhere. This is how I tolerated the emotional emptiness that I felt, and I was ashamed of myself because I knew that God did not want me to live this way.
I would go to church to try and get things right but too often the people in this place of refuge would be as judging and unkind as the people that didn't go to church, so I stayed away.
I felt trapped; I did not know where to turn
I felt trapped; I did not know where to turn. I had been alone all
of my life and I could not communicate with anyone that I knew who could relate to me, and the anger that I felt. I crawled into my imagination of quiet desperation, accepting the experiences of my life as the way it would always be.
One evening, when I was 24, I was driving my car on a road that passed over a mountain. When I came to the top, where the road went into a curve, I gunned the gas pedal and drove off the side of the mountain.
My car landed in a tree. It was at night and I could see nothing past the lights of my car as they faded into the darkness. I sat there for a few minutes, trying to figure out what to do, and I began to move around to see if the car would dislodge, but it wouldn’t. I opened the sunroof and climbed out of the car and pulled myself up to stand on the bumper.
I jumped from my car to the embankment and climbed up to the roadside and stood there looking at my car, mad. I couldn’t even kill myself! Nothing ever went my way.
A few minutes passed when I saw a vehicle coming up to where I was standing. The driver pulled over and was quite surprised at what he saw. He said that he had a friend who owned a large wrecker and that he would go get this person.
It took about 45 minutes for them to return and when they managed to get the cable hooks into the frame of the bumper, they pulled my car out of the tree and onto the road. I got into my car, started the engine and drove to the bank; withdrew $65.00 to pay for his service and then I went to my apartment.
The next day I drove to the place where I left the road and when I looked over the side of the mountain I could not believe what I saw. The drop was about the length of a football field -- almost straight down, and there was only one tree on the side of this mountain! Everything else was shrubbery and weeds. The tree was dead and had fallen, and as it landed the branches turned up to make a net, and this is what I landed in.
I could not process the emotions that I felt. I was blank. I knew that God had spared my life again, but I was mad at Him because of the life that I had to live. I was so angry at how life had treated me that I wore my emotions on my face, and I never smiled. Life had made me ugly.
I was restless and moved around constantly, living in several states working as a bartender or a waiter, and there were times that I would live out of my vehicle. I had a gym membership where I would exercise and shower to change and go to work, only to leave that evening to go get wasted.
For years I lived a blur of alcohol, drugs and anything else I wanted to do to dull the thought of living a life that had no purpose. There were times that I found myself in situations that I should have been hurt or ended up back in jail, but it always seemed to me that there was a presence that kept me safe and my mind sound. I would be torn up on a substance, and that presence would show up. I would come to myself later … not always knowing where I was, but I was ok. This has happened too many times to number.
I eventually moved back to the town that I grew up in because my adoptive father's health was bad and I wanted the opportunity to make things right with him. My life-style did not change and I continued to use substance to escape.
One Sunday morning - as I drove past a new church that had been built in my old neighborhood - I turned around and decided to go in. I was still high and reeling from the night before, but when I walked in that door it was like I had come home … and I kept going back.
I began to do a lot of soul searching and I knew that I was here for a reason. I had no fond memories of my childhood and I did not want to stay in this area for any length of time because the pain was too fresh. I still don't understand why it would be here that God would show me His love and give me peace and quiet in a place that I hated so much.
It had taken my lifetime to understand that my way was not the right way. I had finally come to the end of me. I wanted out, and I was willing to do whatever I had to do. I could not begin to imagine that all of the events of my life had been planned and that God was setting me up for what I now understand to be my deliverance from me.
I met with the pastor, and I was honest about my life and how I felt about people. I wanted the opportunity to be restored in my relationship with God. I asked him if I could attend his church and not be expected to get involved. He said I could and I thanked him.
About a year had passed when we met again, and as we talked, he told me that my problem was that I did not believe in myself and that my healing would come in my worship of God … and I knew that he was right.
He challenged me to read the scriptures in the Bible that told me who I was in Christ. I didn’t at first. Even though I went to church, my self-image would not allow me to think of myself worthy of being a person that God could or even would love.
Every night I went to bed with an empty bottle of wine by my bedside
I was still drinking and using drugs. Every night I went to bed with an empty bottle of wine by my bedside, longing for change, but not having the courage to give up what I was so familiar with.
The church had a three-day meeting and that Sunday was the only service that I could make. The speaker was Pam Vinnett. As she ministered, she would speak to people individually, and near the end of the service she came to where I was sitting, took my hand, and sang to me.
She walked away and then turned around and said to me, “Come here.” I walked to where she was standing and she took my hand in hers and asked, “What is your name?”
In a whisper, I answered, “Billy” and she responded: “Billy - lift up your hands before the Lord in the name of Jesus. Tonight is a night of surrenderance; total and complete surrenderance. Even as I held your hands as I was singing to you the Lord said three times … you have escaped death, literally. Am I telling the truth in this house?”
I responded, “Yes.” She then said, “Not your way, but it’s God’s way or no way in this season. I see you putting your hands to so many different things, but God says this time ask Me where -- where it is that you are to put you energies and watch it work?”
She walked away and I sat down, and about a minute had passed when a copy of this recording (what the Holy Spirit had spoken through her to me) was put into my hand. I had never spoken to her, or any one else in that church to any detail … that she could have known the events of my life. God now had my attention!
After service was over I went to the Christian book store and I bought several different translations of the Bible, in addition to the one that I had, along with a Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, a Strong’s Expository Dictionary and several instrumental worship cd’s.
I sold my TV, and for the next year and a half only went to work, the grocery store and to church. I canceled my gym membership, and I bought a weight set to exercise in my apartment. I quit going to the bars and I quit the drugs. I locked myself up in my apartment and I read the New Testament Bible, and I wrote out every scripture as an affirmation that told me how I was to live my life as a Christian -- by the example that Jesus lived while He was here on this earth.
It was slow at first, but gradually I noticed my attitude began to change, and more often I would find myself spending hours at a time reading, writing and cross referencing all of the translations that I had to get an understanding of what that passage of scripture meant to me.
I had instrumental music playing softly, and I would get lost in the worship of God and often I would find myself weeping, sometimes crying uncontrollably, in release of the emptiness and the anger that I had lived with for so long.
I became consumed with knowing Jesus for who He is, and understanding who I am in Him in the new birth. When I began my study, it was with the intent of finding out who I was, but what I found was closure to who I used to be and this has become my healing. For the first time in my life I was beginning to be at peace with me.
It was during one of my times of worship that God spoke to me again and said in a very soft voice, “I am the Lord your God. I have brought you out of bondage. You will have no other god before me. You will put nothing before your worship of me. I am the Lord your God and I am a jealous God over you. I will show you mercy and I will love you all of your life. Love Me and live for Me.”
When I heard this I lost all composure and I cried for what had to have been hours. When God speaks, what can you say in defense of your efforts to try and make your life right? I had no more excuses.
I asked God to forgive me for doing it my way. I had made myself God over my life and that is why nothing ever worked for me. It took God stripping me of myself, to look up and accept Jesus as Lord over my life.
I am now, because of what I had to go through, fully persuaded that God - if He needs to - will set you up and allow events to happen in your life to bring you to your knees, completely empty yourself of you, broken in your spirit. Only then can He be God in your imagination. Only then can the fullness of Christ be manifested in you.
Even during this time I was not completely free from alcohol because I was still working in the restaurant industry. There were times when I was serving a cocktail I had made for a bar customer, that tears would be running down my face because the presence of God was right there with me. People would ask me what was wrong and I would respond, "You wouldn't understand."
This continued for some time and gradually my drinking became less as I spent more time in study and in my quiet time of worship. I had struggled throughout my entire life with the thought of not being worthy of God's love, and now I was beginning to experience the reality of knowing that God did love me and that He was with me right where I am at. Truly, I was accepted in the beloved.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He has made us accepted in the Beloved. (Eph 1:3-6 NKVJ)
God will meet you at your emotions: This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for He faced all of the same testings that we do, yet He did not sin. (Heb 4:15 NLT)
My time that I have given to reading and writing what has become my worship journal, has allowed "God's time" to bring healing, and create in me the image of myself that God describes to me in His Word, and see the transformation happening right in front of me. Because of this, today, I am free from my dependence in a substance to comfort me, and I am learning how to fall in love with the God who never gave up on me.
God will never leave you nor forsake you ... but the devil will use everything in his bag of tricks to try to convince you otherwise at times, so be aware
I will never leave you nor forsake you. (Heb 13:5 KJV)
It does not matter where you are or what you have done. Your life has great value and you are very important to God. His mercy is never ending.
For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more. (Heb 8:12 KJV)
Everything that has happened in life is not for us to understand. It is my experience that makes me believe that God will allow times of emptiness in our life for the purpose of bringing us to a willingness to ask forgiveness for the justification of our selfishness that we have held on to and allow Him the process of time to heal our emotions.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them that are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28 KJV)
He is a loving and patient Father. You have been given God's Word and His Holy Spirit to help you change the way you think about yourself, and not live in shame anymore:
All scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. (2 Tim 3:16 NLT)
And this hope will not lead us to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love. (Rom 5:5 NLT)
This is God's gift to you in your acceptance of Jesus as your Savior.
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life has gone; a new life has begun! (2 Cor. 5:17 NLT)
I've listened to preachers speak on this and never really understood the significance of the message until I began to study the Bible for myself and realize that I could never be useful to God until I accepted these truths and learn from them.
If you believe only one thing that I write, please understand that God is making every effort to reach out to you right now, because He desires that you give Him your life … so that you can be assured of your salvation, then allowing Him to make you into a new creation just like He has – and still is - making me: to use you to speak to other people about His willingness to love them unconditionally as well … no matter where they are coming from in life or what they have done.
The eyes of the Lord searches the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him. (2 Ch 16:9 NLT)
I want you to experience what it's like to know that God is working with you, to make real what you have wished about all of your life, and watch it happen right before you.
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. (Heb 11:1 NLT)
The hardships we go through here in this life has little if any value until we surrender our anger and pain to God. Once we do that … there is no way to measure the priceless value of that of a changed life of overcoming … and how God can use our changed life to impact the lives of others, for His glory and their good.
I want to be honest with you however. Once you turn your life over completely to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, it will be the time in your when you will learn who you really are. You think that you have struggled in life up until now? This will be the most uncomfortable and emotionally unstable time of your life.
You are in the fight (spiritual battle) for not only your soul and spirit, but the people that God is going to use you to influence in the future. Satan does not want you to live free from the painful memories of your past! He wants you to continue to be angry at God, angry with life, and angry and bitter and vengeful toward those who did you wrong. The past memories of the life that you have lived -- the emotional pain that you have experienced, and the unforgiveness piled up toward those who have hurt you … it is these things that Satan will use to keep you bound, until you surrender them to God so you can be healed from them.
Without a battle, there can be no victory. Until we are severely tested ... we have no real, impacting testimony, nor do we see areas where we are spiritually weak in
Satan is not going to let you go without a fight. A changed life for Jesus Christ makes you a vessel in the hands of God that Satan does not want to have to deal with.
Everything you have ever done that you were ashamed of, or had regrets of doing, most likely will be as fresh in your mind as the day you did it. Any weakness that you have ever had will revisit you. People that you don't even know will be unkind to you. What you thought you had gotten away from will stare you in the face of your imagination every waking moment of your day. Satan is going to attack you where it does the most damage - your inner image. This is Satan’s battlefield. He knows more about you than you know about yourself; that's his job. He knows that if he can keep you focused on the memory of your past failures, you will never be able to imagine (let alone believe) yourself becoming the person that God says you are in His Word, and experience the reality of the good life that God has for you.
When you finally come to the understanding of who you really are in the new spiritual birth, because of what you have had to overcome, you are now the greatest threat to Satan imaginable. Before - you weren’t. This is why he fights you the way he does. He wants to keep you discouraged and depressed as much as possible. He wants you believing his subtle lies and not get caught at it. He wants to keep you a joyless and faithless Christian. He wants to rob you of hope and confidence in Christ and God’s Word every waking minute of your life.
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring loin, seeking someone to devour. (1 Pet 5:8 NASB)
Learn everything you can in how to wage effective spiritual warfare against demonic powers that come against you to keep you held down. You cannot beat Satan on his terms. You have to fight Him with the wisdom and knowledge of God, and the weapons of God. Everything we will ever need to fight Satan on God’s terms is contained in the New Testament Bible.
I strongly believe that you will painfully stay in the place of life that you are now at, and remain there, bound in a prison so painful that God wants to set you free of … you’ll remain there … until you are willing and ready to separate yourself in spending time in the presence of God, in the study of His Word, and your worship of Him for who He truly is.
The image you have of yourself based on memories and experiences of your past, is - to God - a lie.
God shed His innocent blood on the Cross to earn you the right to be a new creation in Him. A new creation that only eternity itself will be able to reveal fully. That’s what He sees when He looks at you. Not what you think you are now; not what you think life has forced you to be. He see’s a future you … a glorious you that you can’t possibly imagine yourself being … but there’s a condition that comes with it. You have to do things His way as given to humanity in the New Testament Bible.
I can’t encourage you enough to become intimate with God your Creator (THE Creator!), and know who you are in Him according to God’s Word. Otherwise, Satan can harass you and torment you and keep you from growing spiritually as long as you don’t know how to stop him. To the degree that you get serious with God and determine to walk in complete obedience to His Word with the help of the Holy Spirit and His specific will for your life … will be a huge difference between living a joyous and peaceful relationship with your heavenly Father … or something less than that.
One more thing about Satan. Believers in Christ Jesus are not to fear the devil, but we are not to be ignorant of his devices either. God assures us that the Spirit of God inside us is greatly superior to any power and influence the devil has.
But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you, is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. (1 Jn 4:4 NLT)
The choice that we have to make is in how we see ourselves: I wish above all things that you would prosper and be in good health, even as your soul prospers. (3 John 2 JKV)
The Bible that was given to me in prison is the best gift I've ever been given
The Bible that was given to me in prison … to this day is the best gift that I have ever been given (outside of Salvation, of course). It was the seed of God's Word that I put into my spirit those years ago that gave birth to my hope of what I am now living today, and because of this I can tell you where God has brought me from.
I now have vision for my life and a better understanding of what to do with what I have experienced. I have titled this study "A Worship Journal." My time alone with God has created in my imagination the hope of living the life that God requires of me. This is and will be an ongoing life-long realization of the fullness of Jesus’ life being lived through us to capture the hearts and the imagination of the people. There is no higher calling.
Part of the purpose of our salvation here in this life is to be delivered from strongholds of sin, and allowing Him to use us as examples of what God can do when we are willing to let Him be Lord in our life.
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time (this present life) are not worth being compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us and in us and for us and conferred on us. (Rom 8:18 AMP)
What an eternal future we have to look forward to each day. Let come what may, praise God anyway! In my study I have written what each scripture means to me, in the understanding of who God created me to be in my new birth. Your understanding may be different than mine. We are both right. My testimony is meant to provoke your imagination and encourage you to study the Bible for yourself -- to come to the understanding of who you are, and learn about the lifestyle that God requires of you. Your way hasn't worked, so give God a chance!
If you are saved, it's time to go deeper, and if you have never accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior today can be the day you begin to learn who you really are. I believe that God will do for you what He has done in me, as you study in your quiet place.
Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (Rom 12:2 NLT)
I now live each day in an intimate God consciousness; His presence is always with me. There is peace in your worship of God.
And God’s peace shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Ph 4:7 AMP)
There is an emotional healing that you find in God’s presence: He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds curing their pains and their sorrows. (Ps 147:3 AMP)
There is elation in experiencing the reality of all that you have hoped for: May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing through the experiences of your faith that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing (bubbling over) with hope. (Rom 15:3 AMP)
God is in the business of restoration: He refreshes and restores my life (myself); He leads me in the paths of righteousness [uprightness and right standing with Him-not for my earning it, but] for His names sake. (Ps 23:3 AMP)
God will take the mess that we give to Him and make a life of significance with it
God will take the mess that we give to Him and make a life of significance with it. You can overcome your past to become who God says you are. We are created by God to do great things. Never settle for anything other than God’s fullness being lived through you. This is what the people are waiting for.
For even the whole creation, all nature, waits expectantly and longs earnestly for God’s sons to be made known, waits for the revealing, the disclosing of their sonship. (Rom 8:19 AMP)
We must live above the image of our past, if we are ever to be the life and image of Jesus the people of this time see. This is our new birth responsibility. As you make time to press into your relationship with Jesus, you will find that He is "I AM" whatever you need Him to be.
The foundational scripture for the study of who I am in my new birth is
Truly, Truly I say to you, he who believes in me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to my Father. And whatever you ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. (Jn 14:12-14 NASB)
What I have studied concerning who I am in Christ in my new birth has created an expectation of these promises that I have hope in, becoming real to me in my lifetime here on this earth.
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. (Heb 11:1 NLT)
Enjoy Your Journey!
I would like to hear from you if this has in any way encouraged you or touched you emotionally. If you know someone who has had difficulty in life and they are struggling to find themselves and what their purpose in life is, or they need hope, send this to them. Because of the internet, it's my prayer that this will reach people from every nation who are looking for the peace, the happiness and the fulfillment in their life that will only come through a personal relationship with Jesus.
My email: firstname.lastname@example.org
PLEASE HELP SHARE THE BEST NEWS GOD HAS FOR EVERY PERSON!
"And this gospel of the
died for sinners] shall be preached in all the world for a witness
unto all nations; and then shall the end come."
(Quote from Jesus Himself: Matthew 24:14).
Consider how many children in "all the nations" have never heard YET what Jesus accomplished for THEM at the cross? PLEASE HELP SPREAD THE GOOD NEWS TO THE LITTLE CHILDREN!
To help us share the Best News every person needs to hear on this planet, randomly click FOR JESUS on just three (3) of the JESUS DID IT! links below. It will take just a few moments of your time. Please - that’s all you are asked to do. God will reward you! (Of course, be highly encouraged to forward one of these video clips to those who may have never heard what Jesus did for them on the cross ... especially young people). Thank you so much!
JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT! JESUS DID IT!
JESUS DID IT! - or - JESUS DID IT!
(Please paste one of the above links onto your Facebook page - website - blog - video; etc.)
Let God Use Your Salvation Testimony!
If this testimony has blessed you, would you please take a few moments and share with us HOW it has blessed you? Your feedback is very important. Please mention the author of this testimony when you email your comments. Thank you so very, very much! Email: email@example.com
A Special Message: http://www.precious-testimonies.com/Exhortations/f-j/HelpingShareTheMessageOfTheCross.htm
Dear Reader - are you at peace with God? If not, you can be. Do you know what awaits you when you die? You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain. Either Jesus Christ died for your sins, or He didn't (He did!). Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God? We plead with you ... please don't make such a tragic mistake.
To get to know God; to be at peace with God; to have your sins forgiven; to make certain heaven will be your home for eternity; to make certain that you are in right-standing with God right now ... please click here to help understand the importance of being reconciled to God. What you do about being reconciled to God will determine where you will spend eternity, precious one. Your decision to be reconciled to God is the most important decision you'll ever make in this life.
If this writing has touched you in some special way, would you please share it with us? It is always a blessing to the ministry staff and to those who support this outreach to hear how God is touching lives through this ministry. Please identify the title of the testimony, and the author's name, and Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
We want to thank each of you who allows us to publish your testimony, for those who faithfully pray for this ministry, for those who care about loved ones and forward these testimonies and other ministry writings to others, especially to prisoners, and for those who help under-gird this ministry financially. You are so vital to this outreach, and we can never thank you enough.
Like most other evangelistic ministries, we rely on the Lord to place it on people's hearts to sow into this ministry He has called us to. Would you please pray and see if the Lord would have you make a love offering to Precious Testimonies? It doesn't have to be a large offering either. No gift is too small, and every gift you give in helping us reach lost souls will be generously rewarded on the Judgment Day, the Bible promises.
For convenience, you can simply click on the secure PayPal donate button below if you want to donate by credit card. Otherwise, you can send your precious gift to: Precious Testimonies, P.O. Box 516, Jenison, MI 49429.
(Precious Testimonies is a non-denominational 501-C-3 ministry, and financial love offerings to this ministry are tax-deductible. A summary of financial love offerings can be viewed by clicking on the following link: Financial Summary).
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Thank You, and God bless you!
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