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A Broken Vessel

Discussion in 'Testimonial Forum' started by Hope For Tomorrow, May 13, 2022.

  1. Hope For Tomorrow

    Hope For Tomorrow New Member

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    Hey everyone, a couple of folks said I should share my testimony.
    I was born into a dysfunctional family in the Jersey suburbs of Philadelphia, my dad was a partier and spent periods with us when he was clean. In-between, my mom worked a lot so us kids spent time at my grandparents and my mom mom planted seeds. I remember her singing bible songs and telling us
    Bible stories all the time. This laid some understanding of who God and Jesus were. My mom mom passed suddenly when I was a teenager with that came some doubt in God. I wasn't aware of why He does the things He does. With this and being in the public school system I grew very distant with Father. I was turning into my dad and started partying a lot towards the end of high school. My mom kicked me out a few times and i would stay with my dad. This was never good because I realize now he wanted to be more of a best friend than a dad. I moved out from his house and couch surfed for a couple years. most of my friends went to college so I would go to their parties and have a places to stay. Going through these cycles for a few years my dad ended up moving to Louisiana and i was crushed that led to more excess, and a couple years after that he passed of an overdose. I was absolutely inoperable as a human being, at 24 I had nothing. Slowly the reality of who i was in this world was catching up with me. A functioning alcoholic, drug addict, fornicator, liar, etc. I was a high school drop out, no education, no trade. Nothing. This outlook of me being worthless ate me up inside.

    My first encounter with God, I somehow made it home from the bar and I'm passed out in my car and I just see white light. Then there was a shout, "WAKE UP!!". I awoke and gasped for air like it was my first. My roommate and neighbors said they were about to call an ambulance for me, they said I was cold blue and dead. I had work that day and I some how managed to make it in. My boss sent me home because "I smelled like death". I had forgotten who God was and I didn't know Him by His voice, but He sure knew me. A little while later I moved back in with my mom and I had a moment, all I heard in my head was my mom mom singing "Jesus loves me". I prayed for the first time in over 10 years, asking God to come into my life and save me. But.. I never repented or asked for Jesus into my heart and forgive me for my sins. I never knew this was what I had to do!! So I got a couple suits and braved going to church for the first time in over 20 years lol. I get out of my car, Bible in hand and this lady kinda poked some fun at me for wearing a suit. I didn't know how to handle that, I almost left right then and there. Then during the offering the gentleman next to me looked at me with the plate in his hand and passed it back instead of to me. My wife later told me it was because first timers aren't encouraged to give, so I forgave the guy lol. But at the time i experienced some church hurt, like wow are all places like this. So I reverted back to old ways.

    At 27 I moved to Florida with a girl I was dating. I thought she was "the one" then I got her pregnant. She told me she was having an abortion I had no say in the matter. The fact that she was so cold blooded with this really made me think and evaluate the decisions I was making. A couple weeks later she left me. I was all alone in, no family or friends for a thousand miles. God brought me to a low point, definitely the lowest point of my life. I was waking up at random places across Tampa. My mom soon moved down and it was at least some support, I got somewhat cleaned up.

    I was a bartender in downtown TPA and Friday happy hours an office group would always come to the patio and have a couple drinks. There was one woman who I was very intimidated of. I could tell she was feeling me so I gave her my number. After getting to know her, she was a single mom of a 3 year old and a new born. I was wayyyy out of my league, but something kept drawing me to her. And her to me. we both were not looking for any sort of relationship but we kept hanging out. I went to Philly for a week because the Eagles won the super bowl. I remember my last day I wasn't going to fly back to Florida. I was going to leave it all behind but that same voice that told me to wake up a few years before, told me, "Go back down to Florida, do the right thing and be a dad to those kids." I stopped what I was doing, booked my flight, and left.

    When I got back down to Florida I moved in with my girlfriend. And through this relationship i slowly started to move towards a healthy lifestyle. I quit doing drugs but was still drinking. Now my girlfriend was a Christian, and through a few bad choices had her children through a bad relationship. She went to church every Sunday but never pressured me to go. Anyways one night I'm a little buzzed and were laying in bed and I asked her, "how can I know Jesus?" and she lead me to the Lord that night! I took her and her oldest a few days later and proposed to her. She said yes and we soon got married. This propelled me into a relationship with God and Jesus. I started going to church, God took the urge to drink from me. I also quit smoking cigarettes. I was super in the Word and the church my wife was going to contradicted a lot of things so we bounced a couple churches until we found our home. I got involved right away. My entire life I was selfish and I wanted a chance to be selfless and this church totally gave me the opportunity. I soon started a podcast and this gave a few of my pastors the drive to create their own. We've been having a blast to not only bring people to Christ but to help people, help people once they've been saved.

    Lately, I've realized I've been pouring so much out to my familly, friends, congregation, group members.... I am leaking. My family and I have been going through a very trying season with our housing and I have been feeling empty. I searched for Christian forums and came across this one and even though there's many denominations, opinions, etc. its really been a blessing reading all the posts and wisdom that many of you all have.

    I thank God for every moment, good and bad, that I've ever had. I praise Him, His Son, and the Holy Spirit for bringing me to the light and using me to complete His tasks.
    Thank you for reading,
    Many Blessings,
    Frank
     
  2. quietthinker

    quietthinker Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your story Frank. Stay awake and be sharp!
     
    Hope For Tomorrow likes this.
  3. Episkopos

    Episkopos Well-Known Member

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    Welcome here! God uses broken vessels. Keep seeking that deeper walk! :)

    Hope for today!
     
  4. Aunty Jane

    Aunty Jane Well-Known Member

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    The truth is out there...we just have to find it....and worship the one who produced it.

    In his address to the "men of Athens" Paul said...
    "And he made out of one man every nation of men to dwell on the entire surface of the earth, and he decreed the appointed times and the set limits of where men would dwell, 27 so that they would seek God, if they might grope for him and really find him, although, in fact, he is not far off from each one of us."

    It takes effort to find God.....but that is what he blesses....
    Welcome...
     
  5. Cassandra

    Cassandra Well-Known Member

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    What a precious message! You are already a blessing here!
     
  6. christs-love

    christs-love New Member

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    Amazing testimony mind = blown
     
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