I want to thank Rosie, Pastor Greg and everyone in this congregation and church family here that made my baptism possible. I became a Christian when I was 15 years old. I first came to know God when I was suffering in a hospital in Karlsruhe, Germany. That’s when I first realized God was always there for me, and discovered The power of prayer and began to have a relationship with God.
When I was 15 years old, I was a passenger in a car that got into a terrible accident. I was in an 8-day coma and eleven broken ribs, tons of facial and bodily contusions, and a very terrible part of it all was that my neck broke as well.
But the most painful and worst part was yet to come. You see the doctors didn’t detect that my neck was broken until 6 months AFTER The accident had happened. During those 6months after my accident, I went back to living a normal teenage life unknowing that my neck had previously been broken and since it wasn’t stabilized, it was displaced and began healing out of place. By the time they found out, I was in a very risky position. They had to either fuse my neck so I could never move it again, or break it again and reposition the bones so it could heal the right way. The second option was experimental at that time and not yet FDA approved and the only person who could perform this 6 hour procedure was a Doctor in Germany.
So despite all my insistence and pleas that I was feeling totally normal and healthy, I was forced to endure a second round of pain. But this time much more excruciating and extended than the first. The doctor had to put screws into my skull and put me in what’s called a halo and drop heavy weights attached to a cord to the halo which was attached to my skull for a period of 3 weeks so that my neck bones and tissue could be easily broken again during the surgery. It was during these painful three weeks as they were stretching me out again, probably 2-3 inches longer than normal, when I called on God for mercy and help for the first time in my life.
I never had prayed before that and I was in so much pain and sadness that I had to go through this. I didn’t know why I was suffering. My mom suggested we pray for the pain to disappear. And when I prayed, God really made the pain disappear. After this whole procedure was completed my neck was probably 90% normal a few years later.
Fortunately, my relationship with God has helped me to discover that there are rewards for being able to withstand agony. The emotional and physical pain that I endured taught me an important lesson: what does not kill me makes me stronger. A challenge faced, whether or not it is overcome, still promotes growth.
After achieving a nearly perfect recovery from such severe injuries, I’ve realized that with the power of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us, each of us can have the courage and power to confront any obstacle that challenges us. Conquering such a painful trial is an accomplishment that I constantly use to motivate myself and Has taught me that through God, I can draw unlimited strength and confidence to face any challenge in life.
I have survived and conquered what seemed to be unconquerable, and I have been given a second chance to live and ever since I recovered when I was 16 years old, I began to dedicate my life to the service of the Lord’s Kingdom. Not as a pastor or anything like that, but just as a regular human being with Christian values, heart, and attitude towards others.
I used to ask myself why me, why why why, why did I have to suffer like this. I was depressed for many years, because I kept telling a pity-me story that complained about hardships of life. But as I got a little older I realized the lesson and the most amazing gift that God blessed me with after having gone through this painful chapter of my teenage life. Here is the lesson I learned, best described in words of the late spiritual Guru, Dr. Wayne Dyer:
“There is no greater power in heaven or on earth than pure, unconditional love. In your quiet time, think about only peace and love. What can you expect as you practice a few days of total unconditional love? Your thought forms of unconditional love will begin to produce what you desire without your even being aware of how it is happening. Your dreams will be more intense, and the vision of your purpose will become clearer.”
This accident led to me having very clear vision and purpose of my life, and it’s about serving the world at your highest potential, it’s about creating greatness for the greater good, because when you truly begin to understand the love of Jesus, and how he loved even those who hated him, we will also truly and unconditionally begin to love all humanity when we remind ourselves that we are all brothers and sisters, as we all have the same Father, as children of God. When we start to love others unconditionally, we love everyone and fear no one. And with God by our side it’s easy to go through our fears to accomplish or co-create anything in his name and honor. It’s an amazing, empowering, and really exciting way to live life.
So just as God left me with a question to ask myself every morning, I’ll share with you the same: “How will you serve God’s kingdom today, tomorrow and forever, and how do you plan on showing Gods other children your gratitude and unconditional love today?”
I’m grateful every day I’m still here and for all the blessings and awesome people in this world, and especially for this amazing wondrous gift called life.
Thank you all for taking the time to hear my testimony.