Testimony - Psalm 139:23-24

Testimony   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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How the Lord opened my eyes to His Word.


This morning will look at bit different as I will be sharing my testimony:

The reason for sharing my testimony is because (1) it’s biblical to do so. (2) Today is senior Sunday
In my testimony I will share some biblical Truth’s that come with salvation in Christ
But first...
What is a Testimony?
Testimony - evidence or proof provided by the existence or appearance of something.
It’s like those who have to “testify” in court they have to say exactly what they witnessed or else they can be put in prison for lying
Someone’s Christian Testimony is the moment where Jesus opened their eyes to their own sin, rebellion, and disobedience towards a Holy God and by grace through Fatih in God’s Son Jesus Christ they are filled with the promised Holy Spirit.
And he has now stripped the Christian’s eyes that were full of scales, to awaken us to His grace, mercy and Truth by the power of the Holy Spirit.
“We can see now spiritually speaking.” - And we testify to Christ who has saved our souls and is sanctifying us now!
Where do we see sharing ones testimony in the Bible?
Often times in scripture we see people sharing about what God has done in their life; because who doesn’t want to share what God has done?
For example in the Gospel of Luke we see Zechariah testify to what He went through in the temple and that His son’s name will be John. (Zechariah went through this, experienced this appearance of an angel and He was forever changed and spoke this testimony to others)
Also lets not forget the Apostle Paul who used His testimony often to encourage and share the Gospel of Christ with those lost and dead in sin as He once was.
Listen to Pauls Testimony this morning...
Acts 22:6-21 ““As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me. And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ And I answered, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And he said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’ Now those who were with me saw the light but did not understand the voice of the one who was speaking to me. And I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’ And since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus. “And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, came to me, and standing by me said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight.’ And at that very hour I received my sight and saw him.”
Paul once spiritually dead, killing Christians has now seen the light who is Christ
Church a testimony has details, moments that leave you in awe of the God of the universe who came down to meet with a fickle, frail human such as we.
As this is Senior Sunday, so we know that you three are about to enter into the adult world, and I thought there be no greater time to share with the Church again my testimony as the pastor of this Church, my journey and story. (As my moment of regeneration came soon after HS)
So Graduation is soon approaching for you seniors:
So Many changes are coming, some changes may have more of a “fear“ Attached to them than others
And some changes may have more of an excitement as you start your journey into young adult-hood.
You May be moving out of your own house, you now will have to pay your own bills, take out the trash and wash your own clothes, live in an apartment and find new friends.
If going away to college and are moving far away from Ben Wheeler this means find a new Church home)
But one thing this morning that we constantly, in ever season(young, or advanced in years) we need to ask God to continue to…
Psalm 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”
Search, meaning and asking God to take a look into our deceitful hearts; that are prone to wonder from His Ways.
And to lead us in the ay everlastIng.
See with every testimony comes God’s Word, well here is my story…
Born and Raised Catholic:
Best described, I was raised in religion with a set of rules to follow but there was no relationship with Jesus. (it was all works based)
I went through all the classes such as (Baptism as an infant, First communion, and confirmation, as these were all the blessed sacrements one must have to ultimately be saved.)
Confirmation being a bishop form Austin Texas…
As we are confirmed our junior year, so this meant nothing to me I was still dead in sin, spiritually blinded.
I did not ever not believe in God though, I knew there was a God I just didn’t know who Jesus was, as silly as that sounds.
And if you leave this earth not knowing Jesus…Jump to My senior year in HS
Senior year in Rockdale:
In the senior season of my life, my life revolved around two things. And that was basketball and my girl Friend (If I wasn’t on the court, I was at her house)
On weekends and at night it would be me in the gym for 4 or 5 hours and afterwards drinking with friends
And staying at home and watching things I should not of been watching, that which in no way brings God glory
I absolutely felt no (conviction) for my sinful ways,(for my drunkenness, sexual sins, lying and selfishness and laziness) as I was dead inside and the Holy Spirit was not yet given to me as a gift.
Because the Holy Spirit does convict
John 16:8And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment:”
Conviction - a sense of guilt and shame leading to repentance (you can now sense something is off)
And notice I had said “The Holy Spirit was not yet given to me as a “GIFT”
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
So graduation day came; and I was on top of the world (which absolutely, enjoy all graduation has to offer, you only get it once. And you deserve it for making it this far with your studies, consistency and hard work.)
Now in my testimony lets move on in the timeline…
After HS Graduation and into college: (a time in my life when I was convicted)
I choose to go to a small college in Bryan called “blinn”
(I don’t advise this) but I dropped out on the first day; because the feeling it gave off was that of HS all over again and I didn’t want that! (I wanted anything but that)
I called my mom and my dad and they said I could stay in Bryan but I had to get a job
Working at Academy Sports:
I had a lot more time on my hands and with this time came alot more experiences that I am not proud of (when I was off work)
I found myself one night running away from the cops when we had alcohol in the car
To being so drunk that I purchased all of my friends drinks and it broke me
I was out of control, spending money, not taking care of my body and health and didn’t care about anybody except myself
And not to mention sexual sin that which every college aged student I knew was in
But all this had a turning point when God opened my eyes to my sinful ways, my rebellion and disobedience to His Words!
When His Word, by the power of the Holy Spirit convicted me of my sin and rebellion and disobedience towards Him.
Nov 6th 2009: (7 Months after graduating HS, broke and hanging on by a thread (emotionally, mentally and spiritually)
One night my co-workers and I decided to go to the late showing of “the fourth kind” - (a movie which was a remake of some real acts of darkness in the bush of Alaska)
As we get into the movie theater (real and fake)
And what I began to witness in this movie was dark, demonic and evil.
A person was possessed and started to twist and be contorted; as they were inside their home. (you would think they are safe right?
As this evil began to fill him so my heart began to beat and I had the thought
What can protect me from something such as evil as this?
Because if it can happen to him in a locked house, what can protect me from such evil?
1. Can my Dede?
2. Can an army
3. Can an atomic bomb?
As we left the theater I was in the most fearful state i’ve ever been in.
Because I had nothing that would protect me from that evil, and demonic presence that was in this “real movie” that I witnessed on the big screen. “Fear had fallen upon me, a darkness was upon my soul.”
I remember the drive home I didn’t say one word, while my friends talked I was scared silent!
They dropped me off and I ran to my apartment, looking behind me as I ran and hoping my cousin who was my roommate would be home, he wasn’t.
Inside the Apartment:
I get inside and shut all the doors, closets and bathroom door (because who wants doors opened behind them When you are terrified?
And I sit there on my paino stool, TERRIFIED, BROKEN AND LOST IN SIN and slowly I began lifting my eyes up to my bible (this bible did have dust on it, as I had been in college station for about 7 months or so.
But I hadn’t really ever picked up this bible it just sat there.
And so I open it to the very back, to a page where...
I remember my Dede putting a song from a morning worship service at her Church that I heard (she was raised baptist)
It was called “Search me.”
And this song all of sudden came upon my heart, mind and it began to jump off my lips and I began repeating and repeating to the point of tears and weeping.
I sang these words….
“Search me O’God and Know my heart today, try me O’Savior know my thoughts I Pray….See if their be some wicked way in me…cleanse from every sin and set me free.”
When I tell you in these moments the fear, guilt and shame vanished. I’m telling you they were as far as the east is from the west.
These words from this song was something that brought peace into my room and into my heart; and I was singing it almost until day break
As our movie was a late night movie and wasn’t done until about 2:30 in the morning
I lay my head to rest with the most PEACE in my soul that I had ever felt, (and to this day still feel, even though I know I still have struggles and battles with my sinful flesh)
But there as peace where there was once fear, now after this singing of this Hymn, what flooded my heart was the Holy Spirit, conviction, grace, truth and power.
John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
So Backtrack: I was a crazy party College student, working at aacademy sports, who stayed up late, got into trouble and was extremely selfish and dead in my sins.
And so on Nov 6th 2009 God opened my spiritual eyes
Now I don’t quite know how to explain what really happened, but when I woke up it’s like I could finally see
The blinds were just barely open in my room but the sun (SON) came piercing into my room (the room felt at peace, my heart felt at peace)
The feeling I describe it now that we have had two Babies. Is that of when they are first born and the room just feels extremely pure and perfect.
But there was one thing that I was being told by the Holy Spirit to put up that was on my dresser (and it was my statue of Mary)
The Catholic Church worships her and so It was quickly that i threw her in the back of my sock drawer. (not that Mary is not a precious sister in the faith and Jesus earthly mother, but Mary is not the Savior of the world.)
See in my Testimony three things were already happening that signified a new life in Christ. As I said at the beginning we would be looking at Scriptural truth’s of a born again believer.
The Holy Spirit was now letting me see spiritually
The Holy Spirit letting me see my sin and be convicted of it (which was once absent)
And He was already leading me to put away idols in my life, that first morning I arose. (conviction in Hebrew means “correction”
Because the Holy Spirit - Opens our spiritual eyes, convicts us of sin and leads us into righteousness (all things that are truthful and right)
John 16:13When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”
Those being three things that the Holy Spirit does in the life of born again Christian now...
The True Test:
Me being a partier in college and me having this group of friends whom I would only drink with…
So we had a huge party planned the next day; and they called me because I was supposed to be brining over some alcohol and other things for the party.
They called me and asked me where I was because I had been sleeping. I told them “I am not coming tonight, I am going to stay at home and read my Bible.” - And this is exactly what I did!
I read, I highlighted, I underlined all the way to the flood in Genesis.
And I did not for one second think “O gosh I’m really missing out!” No I was at peace, in my apartment alone, reading my bible, no longer scared but filled with the Holy Spirit learning about God in the Word.
We can add one other thing to our list of three that happens in the life of born again Christian.
You have a desire not upon your own strength, but by the Holy Spirit to know God’s Word, that which is truth that will set you Free!
John 16:13 “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”
John 17:17 “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.”
My only hunger (mind you I had no one telling me to “read your bible) My only thirst and hunger that morning/day was the Word of God.
I move on from Bryan and head back home only to move to Waco: (because it’s not always wise to stay put in a place surrounded by temptation and past sins)
The True leap of faith
I remember leaving Rockdale and nobody came with me (it was me and God)
But God provided me a Church home, a loving community of Christians to help me along my new journey of faith (and some of these brothers and sisters in Christ still encourage me on the journey)
And today He hasn’t let go, nor will he ever let go.
He is sanctifying me, and us until one day He glorifies us with Him!

4 things from my testimony: (mind you I did not have anyone except me, the Holy Spirit and the Word of God in these moments. No pastor, teacher, podcast, phone call or Christian friend.)

The Holy Spirit must open our spiritual eyes and help us see we are sinners and that we have fallen short of the glory of God and are in deep need of rescue from our sin, shame and guilt through Christ (once you are born again)
So God gives you the gift of the Holy Spirit to fill you, by grace through faith and trust In Christ Jesus Finished work, in life, on the cross, in the grave and rising from the grave!
So the Holy Spirit now lives in you and Convicts you of sin as to rid idols from your life (idols that have made there home for far to long in your life)
And the Holy Spirit gives you a deep, Godly, holy desire to read and know the Word of The Lord. (It’s where we are reminded of Christ and all His promises to us)
Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
This here is for everyone, but as it is senior Sunday, seniors really listen in.
Here are something’s you need not go without as you enter into a new stage of life:
We know you must be born again, you must be given spiritual sight and the Holy Spirit must dwell in you and after this...
You need a Church home, as this is where you learn more about God’s Word, hear the preaching and teaching of the Word. (We are starting a young adult Sunday school here and I am so excited to see the fruit that comes from it)
You need a community of Christians to do life with; A Christian is to not do life alone. (the Church FBCBW)
You need to be In the Bible yourself reading, highlighting, learning and asking the Holy Spirit every time to reveal Christ to you In the Word, and ask Him to “search you”
From my testimony:
If you haven’t understood that we are born into the world dead spiritually in sin and are in need of redemption through Christ
If you haven’t understood that YOU on your own can not protect yourself from the evil and sin that is in your flesh
Because before we can be protected, have peace, and be led by the Holy Spirit we first my realize that Christ is Lord and Savior of our Lives And be filled with the Holy Spirit.
John 16:7Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.”
He fills us with His Holy Spirit (once spiritually dead, and now spiritually alive)
The Lord is the only one brothers and sisters who can protect us from the spiritual darkness, such as in my testimony, such as in your testimony: He not only protects us but He saves us from hell and the grip of Satan and sin.
Our eyes that once had spiritual scales on them (Acts 9:18 “And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;”
If the scales never fall off your eyes you will never see.
Trust in Christ today!
And if you have already Trusted in Christ and are filled with the Holy Spirit now seek to grow in Christ.
Psalm 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”
This is the Scripture God used to get my attention; that I am a sinner, to open my eyes to His grace and mercy and to fill me and lead me by the Holy Spirit “and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Everlasting meaning - never ending.
See this Scripture still today gets my attention; as I know I am prone to wonder from the Lord’s Word.
So I ask Him over and over again to search me, know me, help me, lead me “in the way everlasting”
Do you sit here and you can say I actually don’t know the Lord. (Well Today Trust In Jesus)
What do you need to ask the Lord to do in your life? What does the Holy Spirit need to convict you about?
And what do you need to confess to a brother or sister in Christ, or what do you need to repent of right now?
With Christ in Us by the Holy Spirit there is no ending in Sight, forever we will be with Him!
For you who are in here and you are a Christian:
Seek Christ in the Word by the power of the Holy Spirit and You will find him and it will be good for our soul, your life and your journey as a Christian.
And never get tired of asking the the Lord to “search you...”

As I was asking terrified, full of fear and frightened; in the theater and at my apartment, on that night of Nov 6th 2009.

So what can save me from my sin, and this evil and darkness of the world?
1. Can my Dede?
2. Can an army?
3. Can an atomic bomb?
4. No. Only Christ Jesus!
1 timothy 1:12-16 “I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.”
Psalm 18:28 “For it is you who light my lamp; the Lord my God lightens my darkness.”
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