I got saved back in 1986. When it first happened all I knew was that I was going to Heaven when I die. My introduction to God was finding out He had made a way for me to escape the path to hell that I was on. I was attracted to Jesus because I thought that by believing in Him it would make me some sort of super human. I was really attracted to the power of Jesus. He healed the sick. He made blind men see, deaf men, hear, and He raised people from the dead. Then He rose from the dead after 3 days in the grave.
I joined the Navy soon after giving my life to the Lord. In the Navy, I was on my own for the first time. I encountered great opportunities for sin. Port calls made alcohol and women readily available. I was tested over and over in areas of my life where sin existed. I failed over and over. At one point I was on such a rampage that I was sure that I was going to hell. Not when I died, but soon, because thought God was going to kill me.
I got to the point where I could no longer sleep at night (this was just a matter of a month or two after beginning my first cruise with the Navy). I had been with prostitutes and drinking like a drunkard. I mean a lot. One night the ship was underway (USS New Jersey) and I couldn’t sleep. I hadn’t been able to sleep for days. I’d just lay in the rack wide awake all night. On this night I got up, got dressed and went out onto the missile deck. The sky was clear. You could see stars forever. I wanted to pray but I wasn’t sure God would hear me after all I had been doing.
As I began to kneel I burst into tears before either of my knees touched the deck. I cried for a good while. I repented. I apologized. I was truly sorry for the way I had been living. I felt such relief afterward. I knew He had forgiven me. He made me feel comforted. I was finally able to sleep. I felt as fresh and new as when I first gave my life to Him. It was like taking a bath.
When I had gotten so deep into sin that I thought He might kill me, He was simply waiting for me to finally come to Him and confess. He forgave me and made me feel brand new again. He has done this over and over in my life. He accepts me the way I am while He patiently waits for me to finally see things His way and change accordingly. He is forever patient with me. No one has ever been as good to me as God has for the past 20 years.
God? He’s my friend. And I will be His friend forever.