Dave thought life could be lived as he pleased doing as he wanted. Dave’s plan was to ask for forgiveness for his sins at the last minute – on his deathbed. Things didn’t quite go to plan though. A little pamphlet entitled “This was your life” made an impact.
BSA 650 Thunderbolt Police Special.
I just want everyone to know that forty years ago, on Christmas Eve, I received a little Christian booklet in the mail and it changed my life.
Hunger and loneliness
I was bought up in a church-attending family and did have some knowledge of God, but I was living for myself. I don’t remember much happiness in my childhood. Mum died when I was 13 and my teenage memories are of hunger and loneliness. So I was living for myself and for what I could get. Many of my dreams and ambitions were lost in the quicksand of low self-esteem.
Living without Christ means dying without Christ
I had a serious motorcycle accident while serving in the Queensland Police Force. I had known that one had to ask for forgiveness of sins through the work of Jesus dying on the cross. Living with the arrogance of youth, I had decided to do as much ‘sinning’ as I could and on my deathbed say “Forgive me Lord” and I was in! But I did not know the Bible told me that if I lived without Christ I would die without Christ. Lying on the road after the crash I experienced sensations and feelings that I can still clearly remember. A week or so later, I discussed this with medical people and I was told that I had been dying. As I had not given Christ or forgiveness of sins any thought at that time, my plan was shook up somewhat!
The powerful effect of a small booklet
Then the ‘This was your life’ booklet arrived on 24th December 1974.
My memories of that Christmas Eve are still very, very clear. I read the tract and it impacted me. I passed it to my wife Marj and said, “Here, read this.” I watched her as she read it and when she had finished she handed it back saying, “Wow, that’s powerful”. I read it again and then sat for a few minutes, thinking. I quietly got up, went into our bedroom and knelt beside the bed.
My prayer went like this: “God, I give up. You can have my life. I’ve only made a mess of it anyway. You can have my life but You’re not getting much anyway. If You can put it back together and use it feel free to do so.” And then, not knowing what I was saying, I blurted out “Fill me with Your Holy Spirit.” I remember thinking that sounded very religious so I said it again. “Yeah Lord, fill me with Your Holy Spirit. That sounds good to me.” I don’t remember anything else from that night, but I do know that my life changed from that point on.
As I began my walk with Christ I remember vividly a time of broken repentance as I wept in an agony of sorrow and remorse at what my previous life had been. God did fill me with His Holy Spirit and He did put my life back together.
From that time on I have been building a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, which has become very dear to me. During the last 30 years I personally have experienced ups and downs. That’s natural. But because of Jesus I have been able to weather the downs successfully.
The bible is now the word of life to me, whereas formerly I saw it as just a book.
The bible says, “I knew of You (God) then only by report, but now I see You with my own eyes” (Job 42:5, New English Bible, words in italics are mine). I have experienced this truth. I have discovered that it is more important to have a relationship with Jesus rather than a religion of Jesus.
Since that Christmas Eve thirty years ago I have experienced a peace, a purpose and a wonderful life that I never had before. I also know that Jesus has helped me become a better husband, a better father and a better person.
Feeling no bitterness
Because of the accident, pain and discomfort are my constant companions kept mostly under control with daily medication. I have no bitterness towards the Police Department and Government for refusing any form of compensation. I have been wonderfully blessed by the fruit of the Spirit as listed in Galatians 5:22-23. What that little booklet did for me it can do for others. Don’t hesitate to let others know about Jesus.
Come to know your Creator (animation)
The Reason (music video)