Well, it seems that quite a few of my brothers and sisters in Christ in the blogosphere are having the courage to give their testimonies on how they came to believe in the Messiah – Jesus Christ the Saviour of the world and God in the flesh.
So, here is the beginning of my story.
I was born here in Western Australia in 1948 to a mother and father who were both troubled people. Dad, I’m told, was in the beginnings of his alcoholism and mom was having trouble dealing with that, so neither of them was able to give my sister or I the love and time we needed. When I was about 5 yrs we shifted into the country so dad would have a better chance of getting work. For many years we shifted from place to place as dad was able to get work and then eventually lost them. Nevertheless, those years are probably the best memories as far as my childhood went. I was a child who was always quite withdrawn from most of the other kids, often preferring to sit in the lunchroom reading comics at lunchtime instead of joining in with the other children on the playground. My mum, because of the religion (a ‘Christian’ sect)she was in at the time, disapproved of my being involved in rough sports, any social activity that was considered of being of ‘the world’. So, to have any kind of peace with her I would conform. So, except for a few friends I grew up a lonely kid and got used to being a loner. My sister was more rebellious against such restrictions, and that actually probably helped her in many ways. Dad’s alcoholism was less evident in these years, as he found it hard to get hold of the booze in any regular supply, and I think he was actually glad to have it so. Poor mum – she didn’t handle those years in the country too well, and a few times went to live with her brother in Perth, as he was of the same religion. It enabled her to carry on, at least, after being with them for a while. At such times, I think I remember going and staying with my dad’s brother (who later became redeemed by the Lord, and was a fearless witness for Him).
At the time I turned 12, it was decided to return to Perth so that I would be able to go to high school (around 1960). The same pattern happened in Perth where dad was concerned, as we moved from place to place as dad got and lost jobs. During these early teenage years I was going on a regular basis to my mom’s religion’s meetings.
By the way, I should put a bit of an explanation in here. Her religion were basically Bible believing people, and the reason I labelled them as a sect is because they believe they are the only ones amongst Christians going to heaven. We know of course that the Lord says “whomsoever will believe shall be saved”
In any case I got a good knowledge of the Bible in those years. At home however things were pretty bad. So bad I have blocked out some of those years. Our last shift as a family we ended up in a suburb called East Guildford. At this time dad had got to the point where he was drinking methylated spirits in the morning because he was not able to get to the pub till later in the day, and he would more likely than not have run out of his hidden stashes. Mom finally got to the point where she left him and took me with her. It brought dad up with a jolt, because he did love us, despite everything. He went to a local doctor, who more than coincidentally knew a fair bit about alcoholism. At the doctors’ advice, dad started going to AA, and after slipping off the wagon a time or two, got hold of the program of the 12 steps. From then until he died 20m years later, he never had another drink. During these years (about 20 yrs of age) I went to a Billy Graham crusade here in Perth and was (I believed so at the time) saved. I began to attend an Assemblies of God church and enjoyed the fellowship there. However, the church became divided over some matter and ended up splitting, with a lot of bitterness. I went to the split off part of the church for a while, but they ended up getting weird, so I left there. After some other things happened (which strangely I can’t even remember) I turned my back on the Lord for many years, and became more and more of a loner and ever more bitter. From my early twenties to my early thirties I was living in boarding houses for the most part. I cut myself off from having any friends, and I’m not sure even whether I was quite sane. It was 10 years of self-imposed hell.
Ok, I’m having trouble here staying awake, so I will continue soon.