Reports of Changed Lives Through Encounters With Jesus Christ

Is Jesus Christ living today? Read these reports of changed lives and decide for yourself.

My Road to Salvation

My name is (editor's note: name withheld for the personal safety of this man). I was born and raised in Ecuador, South America. I grew up in a large Catholic Family, and throughout my life I knew there was a God, at least the way I was taught to believe. A God that only listens when we are “perfect” and when we are “good”, and thus I believed that I was not worthy of God’s favors and mercy, until February of 2000 when the supernatural happened ...

I returned to the USA for a second time in December 1999, after five years of living in Ecuador. Originally I stayed with my uncle who lived in Clinton, Iowa. I had difficulty finding a good job, and I took whatever I was able of find at the Labor Ready Office in downtown Davenport, obviously I was not too happy with my situation. I am a computer programmer by trade and I was sending resumes to as many places as possible. Finally by the end of January I had a job interview with a company that I didn’t remember sending a copy of my resume to. This company was located in Muscatine, IA, about 55 miles southwest of Clinton.

The day before the interview I drove to the place where I had to be for the interview. I didn’t want anything to go wrong. As I passed Davenport on highway 61 on my way to Muscatine, I saw a cloudy sky in the horizon, it seemed like it was going to rain. As I kept driving and passed Blue Grass, I felt like a magnet was pulling me towards Muscatine, the clouds kept getting darker and darker. I had a feeling of melancholy, but at the same time I felt a lot of peace. When I arrived on Park Avenue, I looked towards my left and decided to drive around. I felt something really strange, even though it was my first time in Muscatine, I felt like I wanted to stay there at any cost, even though I was alone I didn’t feel lonely. I said to myself, I don’t care if I don’t get the job, I am going to stay in Muscatine even if I have to flip hamburgers. I didn’t have much money, only $120.

The next day I returned to Muscatine for the job interview, and to make the story short I will say that I got the job without major effort. Additionally, I received a $5,000 dollar sign in bonus which came at the perfect time. I rented a room on 7th street and Mulberry Ave, bought some clothes for work, and had my car fixed.

How I Received Christ

After a couple of months of getting to know the city, I visited a barbershop close to downtown Muscatine, the owner was Mr. Ken Cooley, whom I later found out was a pastor. I asked him if he knew of a church where I could assist, and he recommended that I visit Pastor Mark Anderson at The Church of the Living Water. That same day I called Pastor Mark, and he invited me to attend a Bible study the following Sunday at 9:00 am.

I assisted in the service. That was my first experience with that type of worship. I was used to a 30 to 45 minutes ritual service, but the worship at The Church of the Living Water was completely different. Even though it was a two hour service (from 10:00 until 12:00) I didn’t feel tired and wanted to stay longer.

After the service, Pastor Mark Anderson invited me for lunch to his house, which was another surprise for me. I was impressed by such openness. Pastor Mark opened the door of his house to a complete stranger and invited him to have lunch. Events like this started to make me think about some type of destiny or supernatural power. How had my life become so easy with everything falling into place all of the sudden?

Pastor Mark talked to me about God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit. He also mentioned the four Spiritual Laws on a piece of paper, which I still have and will keep for the rest of my life. It is a reminder of the moment I realized that God had taken over my life by leading me to Muscatine and placing Pastor Mark in my life to show me His unconditional love.

After I Found Christ These Changes Took Place

From the time I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I have stopped being afraid. I feel strong and ready to take over the trials and tribulations I have had to face after I found God. With God on my side, who can be against me?

Now, years after I let God take control of my life, my life has more meaning. There is a reason for everything, and everything falls into place at the right time. In other words, I need God by my side to lead me for the rest of my life.

Reports of changed lives #6

Sue Cox-- Buddha Didn't Hear Her!



I came from a Buddhist background. As a kid I was taught to treat people with respect and kindness, and to be a selfless person.

I thought as long as I treat people the way I want to be treated, life would be a piece of cake. But that was not the case.

My story began after I came to this country. Not only was I challenged by culture shock, I was mocked, bullied, oppressed, humiliated and robbed. The man that I trusted with my life turned out to be the worst nightmare in my life.

After eight years of cruel mental abuse I got divorced and I became single parent with 4 kids, my youngest one was 7 months old at that time.

I thought now that after I was divorced I would be saved, but that was not the case either. The abuse continued. I was mentally crippled!

I thought “death” was the only way out. I felt so alone. My families were 26,000 miles away, who would I call for help?

I was brainwashed and I believed that no one would believe me, no one would care. I became very fearful, resentful, angry, hateful, hopeless and unforgiving, not knowing that I was my worst enemy.

My children were the only hope I had. Somehow I managed to raise them single-handedly and put my oldest son in college. I became a proud mother with four straight “A” students.

I bragged, I boasted, I took the merit. I thought if it wasn't for me, they wouldn't be here. I was prideful!

I thought everything was going to be ok then, but the abuse continued, but this time, it was directed towards my daughter.

How my Life Changed Forever

In 2003 I lost my daughter to my ex-husband.

I fought, but I was defeated. I cried out to god (my Buddhist god) and he did not hear me.

I felt totally helpless! The thought of suicide came across my mind and I was living in torment.

Finally I confided in a friend of mine and he told me that I needed to receive Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and that Jesus was the only one who could help me.

Although I was in desperation and the end of my rope, I told my friend, "No way am I going to change my religion".

Nevertheless, my friend insisted on praying for me and wanted me to pray with him. I went along so that he would get this "Jesus thing" off my back.

Then, one Sunday night as I was flipping through the channels on TV, Joel Osteen was on. Somehow I stopped at that channel and I began to listen to him.

To my surprise, I felt that he was talking to me! His message pierced my heart. I began to weep and felt this tremendous pain in my heart like a heart attack. Joel was saying, “God loves you, He wants the best for you, He will never leave you nor forsake you, He is a good God and He loves you”.

I sat four feet away from the TV and cried like a baby, I felt love, I saw hope.

I told myself, “God loves me, He knows what I have been through, He loves me!!”

At the end of the program Joel invited his TV audience to say this prayer and receive Christ.

I closed my eyes and prayed with all my heart. I repeated every word Joel said.

At the time, I had no idea what I was praying. I didn't understand what “I repent of my sin” meant.

All I knew was that “God loves me and He cares about me”.

Since that day, my life has never been the same.

My Life with God

After that night, for some supernatural reason, my heart desired to know Jesus.

I began to watch sermons on TV. Faithfully, every Sunday from 8:00-11:00 am, and every chance I got I took notes.

I listened attentively for a year. My relationship with the Lord grew and grew and I was transformed little by little. I learned how to pray, and joined the local church.

I joined a small group at church and was baptized.

I even invested $10.00 and bought a bible from Wal-Mart, the best investment I ever made! Now, I sing Psalms, I worship and I study bible truth.

Life is good, life is really good. I am wiser, stronger and happier. I was lost, but now I am found. I learned to forgive and I have forgiven my ex-husband and all those who crossed my ways. I no longer take credit for my children’s achievements but I boldly proclaim: "ITS GOD’S GRACE!!".

God changed my life and gave me hope. But you can’t know God if you don’t know Jesus. In John 14:6 Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to my Father but by Me".

I am now a new creation in Christ Jesus, my life is filled with hope, joy, peace and love.

Sue Cox,
Muscatine, Iowa

Reports of changed lives #5

Bernie Blaskowski-- The Buck Stops Here!

Before I Received Christ I Lived and Thought This Way

Before I received the gift of eternal life that Jesus died to give me, I often felt empty and thought "there has to be more to life than this".

Life had little meaning to me. I’d ask myself, "Is this all there is?"

How I Received Christ

One Saturday, I was sitting in my college dorm studying when two guys knocked on my door.

They were there to see the guy that used to live there, but they asked if they could talk to me for awhile. I said sure. So they started to talk to me about Jesus and how to get eternal life.

Well, after talking to me for awhile the one guy apparently could see that I wasn’t getting it. So he took out his wallet and handed me a dollar bill and said "here I’m giving you this dollar bill. Now what do you have to do to get it?

I said, "well, I suppose I just have to take it". He said "that’s right and that is all you have to do to recieve the gift of eternal life".

I thought that that was a strange idea because I thought you got into heaven by being good. God certainly wants us to be good, but the problem is that no one is good enough.

That is why Jesus came as a man to die to pay the penalty for our sins so we could have eternal life as a free gift from Him.

And all you need to do to get this free gift is to receive it by faith from Him.

I have come to know that that is true. I watched those people who believed in Jesus and attended their on-campus meetings for about a year and I could see they had something I didn’t have.

So on the basis of what I could see in their life I prayed and asked God to forgive me of all my sins and told Jesus that I believed that He had died for my sins and that I wanted the gift of salvation.

After I Found Christ These Changes Took Place

That was more than 30 years ago now.

It was the best decision I have ever made.

God is no longer the far away God that He was before He saved me. Now He is near to me and I know He loves me and I know I have eternal life.

God, who is now my Father, continues to bring me on into maturity and provides for me. I am thankful for the wife He provided for me when I was ready for her.

I am thankful for the children He gave us and I am thankful for the continuous presence and on going relationship that I have with Him. Jesus wouldn’t have bothered dying for us if we could have made it on our own 'goodness'.

Please consider these things before God!

Favorite Bible verse:
John 3:16-18 (NASB)

16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.

18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

God bless you.

Sincerely,

Bernard L. Blaskowski,
Fruitland, Iowa.

Reports of changed lives #4

Mike Nelson Rescued From Self-Destruction, Finds Love

Mike Nelson gives his personal report of a changed life by the power of Jesus Christ

Before I Received Christ I Lived and Thought This Way

Before I came to know Christ my life was plagued by drugs, vulgar language, criminal acts, and all sorts of destructive behavior. My life was filled with feelings of inadequacies, abandonment, aloneness. Life was not a happy place for me. I had no feelings of love, being loved or even feeling I was worthy of love. Nightly I would sob and cry and pray for death to release me from my misery and sufferings. I was angry, bitter, resentful, self-destructive in my thinking and actions.

How I Received Christ

I had made a vow early in my 20's that God used to bring me home to Him. I vowed never to set foot in a church again-- unless asked by a woman! So God brought a woman into my life for the 1st time ever. This woman asked me to join her in a church. God even used her to pick the church. That is how I found Jesus. (So be careful what you swear or vow, for God will hold you to it.)

After I Found Christ These Changes Took Place

I started to feel much better about myself and I found myself no longer praying for death, but looking at the new lease I had on life. I started seeing what love was all about. I see it in media (movies, t.v., etc.), in how we care for pets, in our friendships, in just about everything. Sometimes I still feel the aloneness and sorrowful regrets of my past, but they no longer overwhelm me like they had. Yes, things are getting better and maybe someday I will experience love for myself and maybe even find myself married and with a family. Jesus brought hope to the hopeless when he came and rescued me from myself, my emotions, and my past.

Favorite Verse: II Corinthians 10:7 Look at what is before your eyes. If you are confident that you belong to Christ, remind yourself of this, that just as you belong to Christ, so also do we.

Mike Nelson,
Muscatine, Iowa

Reports of changed lives #3

Deb Kerr, Saved from Emptiness, Found true Happiness with Christ!

Before I Received Christ I Lived and Thought This Way

I grew up in a home where my Mother was a Christian and my Dad was not.

My mother and us, the children went to church every week and I had received Christ as a child. Church was a way of life.

But as a teenager I was lonely and became more confused about God as time went on and finally left the Christian life. I just stopped going to church and got involved with a man.

We had other things to do. I would not normally go to church at all because, “I couldn’t handle it!” I later went to college, began a career, and married. I was happy. Well, sort of!

I thought I should be happy, but deep down inside I wasn’t. I was still confused, fearful, and often depressed. I felt empty and that something was missing, but really didn’t understand because, on the outside, my life looked great and things were going well.

How I Received Christ

Finally, my Mother talked me into going to church with her and all I did was cry.

That week when I was home alone, I was thinking about my reaction to going back to church. I started shaking and crying.

Again, I felt God’s Spirit and I knew he wanted me to come back to him. I resisted for I was determined to have a different marriage and life than my parents.

I did not want to raise any future children in a household with parents like mine, a divided household of Christian and unbeliever. I went from saying, “No Lord”, to “Save my husband and I will come back to you.” That did not work for how do you bargain with God?

I walked into my bedroom and suddenly I was not there anymore but in a long line of people. I did not understand, I didn’t think I had died, but somehow in a flash, the world had ended. I would soon meet my maker and knew what that meant-- judgment!

I prepared myself in what to say in great fear. My turn came and I stepped into a very bright light. I could not see much, but I was aware that someone stood to my right behind a stand with a large book on it. I knew the Lord Jesus sat high up as I stood before him.

His love for me surrounded me so strong that I never wanted to leave his presences again. The thought seemed like the worst cruelty.

I opened my mouth to say, “Lord, you didn’t save my husband so that’s why I did not serve you.” But nothing came out, no words or even sound.

Someone announced that Christ is truth and only truth was in his presences. I knew that I had only excuses!

Suddenly, I was back in my bedroom and inside of me I could hear the Holy Spirit speaking, “Where you spend eternity is your responsibility, your destiny is your own.” I cried for forgiveness and surrendered my life to him.

After I Found Christ These Changes Took Place

It has been twenty- six years since that experience and the decision. I have not regretted it.

I wish I could say everything was bliss from then on, but life has not always been easy. I changed and really became a different person after that. I began to think different thoughts, have different goals and value different things.

I still had my battles, but I have known great happiness and peace that would not of been possible without Christ in my life.

God worked in such a way in my life that depression finally had an end. That was wonderful!

Today, I am still changing, becoming someone different.

2 Corinthians 5:17: Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.

Deb Kerr,
Muscatine, Iowa

Reports of changed lives #2

Marcia Lee, a Friend of the Truth

Before I Received Christ I Lived and Thought This Way

Before I knew anything about receiving Christ, I was a pretty strong, self-sufficient person.

I thought that the key to having a happy, good life was acting "nice" and avoiding getting caught doing anything wrong.

I believed in God (in theory), but was entrenched in the natural, and had no clue how to do it any other way. I did not know there was the possibility or need for God to have a personal relationship with me, or me with Him.

As I mentioned, I was a master at avoiding getting caught, so in that way avoided situations which would cause me to feel any guilt for my actions.

How I Received Christ

During my first year of college, I witnessed a dramatic change in the life of a friend.

She had come home on break from college and was talking to me about, "Jesus this..." and "the Lord told me this..."

It wasn't so much what she said, but how her life had changed that caused me to pause and wonder if something like that could ever happen to me.

I argued with myself for a few days, then went back to talk with her. During this time, the reality of why Jesus had to die became clear to me.

You see, I had grown up going to church and knew the facts about Jesus dying on the cross for sin (general), but I had never thought about the fact that it was MY sin (specifically) which made Him have to die.

I then could no longer remain self-sufficient and try to make it on my own because I realized that I was a dismal failure at trying to be "good".

I knew Jesus had to die because I needed Him--my sin required that Jesus die.

My friend explained John 3:16: ["God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life"].

It seemed too easy, but all I had to do was believe in Jesus and what He did for me. I was ready. I was sorry Jesus had to die, but I knew I needed Him.

I prayed and believed.

After I Found Christ These Changes Took Place

After I found Christ, I physically felt a burden lift off me--I think it was the burden of trying to be good on my own. What replaced it was an incredible sense of peace--peace in trusting Jesus.

Another thing that really changed is that now, instead of trying to hide and avoid getting caught, I love pursuing the truth.

Truth is my friend now. Even when the truth is that I need to change the way I'm doing something, I know I have Someone who loves me and will help me to change and grow.

Even though it has been a lot of years since I first believed in Jesus, He has stuck with me, and my life is very fulfilled walking with Him.

And I know I will enjoy eternal life with Him!

Marcia Lee
Muscatine, Iowa

Reports of changed lives #1

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