My Testimony-

For many months I have been very nervous about putting my testimony on here. But after thinking about it for a while, I came to the realization that the reason I wouldn’t want it on here is because people would read it and would think I’m crazy. Maybe this testimony would also be detrimental to my novel sales as well. Well, I’m no longer worried about any of that. You see, what happened to me was so incredible, that it is my responsibility to share it with anyone who will listen. I’m not going to quote anything from the Bible, as I’m in the process of reading it, and I’m not qualified to preach it anyway. What I will write, is the truth, exactly as it happened to me. I think that’s all that’s required of me for now.

I was raised in the Greek Orthodox religion. My family and I used to go to church often, but the only reason I really liked going was because there was a comic store across the street that my brother and I used to frequent immediately afterwards. It was like a reward for having to put up with a couple of hours of sheer boredom. My mother was (is) very religious and I used to like getting under her skin by saying things like, “Prove that God exists.” and “There’s no such thing as God.” For 42 years I believed that Jesus was just a clever guy who pulled a few tricks just to get a lot of people pissed off at him. I didn’t believe in Jesus as the son of God. I couldn’t fully subscribe to the belief that there was a flying man up there who loved me so much, that he suffered on the cross for everyone’s salvation.

I always thought of myself as a good guy. I’ve never hurt anyone (intentionally), but I did have an illness that was a part of my life for many years. It was destructive to my soul… no matter how hard I tried, I could never get rid of it. I had had it for nearly 20 years, and I honestly did not know how I was ever going to be able to get free. I assume it would have taken months of intense therapy, drugs, etc. to purge myself of it, if entirely possible. I don’t know. On the night of December 21st, 2012, I was home by myself doing renovations on the house. Three hours previous, my wife had taken off on a vacation with family, so I had all the time in the world to work on DAMASTOR, so I got down to it. As I was typing away, I suddenly heard a voice inside of my head. It said get on your knees and ask for forgiveness from Jesus. I did as was suggested and got down on my knees and out loud, I asked for forgiveness from Jesus. That’s when the uncontrolable weeping started. I wept like a baby for two hours straight. The most incredible thing is that AS SOON AS I CONFESSED AND ASKED FOR HELP FROM JESUS, not two seconds afterwards, this energy enveloped me and coursed through me! The blackness (my sins) that was, up to that point, tucked away and safely hidden from me in my heart, was suddenly gone. I couldn’t believe it. I felt weightless. And it wasn’t until after it was gone that I realized that it had been hiding there to begin with. The most amazing, liberating, loving, intense feeling of pure joy overcame me and it was at that instant that I knew Jesus (the same man who died on the cross for us) had forgiven a miserable wretch that did not deserve it. My illness disappeared immediately and is no longer my master. And there is not one iota of doubt in my heart that Jesus loves me, loves us all. Jesus took the time to heal me and forgive me even though I had used His name as a curse on more than several occasions. I’m still reeling from that experience and I’ve made it a point to tell everyone about it. DAMASTOR was never meant to be preachy. I was going to keep it as non-religious as one could make a book about angels and demons. God was going to be called “The Light”. There was no mention of Jesus. Needless to say, I changed that after this occurrence.

Not all was well, though. Since I knew that I had just been healed by Jesus, that meant heaven was real. God was real. That meant hell was real. I freaked out. I couldn’t sleep for weeks out of pure, intense fear. I had to warn my friends, my family, anyone who would listen. Hell is no longer a myth in my life. I didn’t want to believe that such a place existed because it was too terrifying. It is. It is the most horrible thing there is. That’s why I needed to write this. I had to talk to a priest, which means I had to confess what happened to me. I had to figure out a way to get this panic under control. Our chat helped me more than he could ever know, and immediately afterwards, I went to Chapters to get my hands on a King James Bible. I had never read one before. And I’m still not even halfway done, but I’m reading it. People think (just like I thought) if they’re a nice person, they’re a shoe-in for Paradise. Nope. It doesn’t work like that at all. There’s still this matter of sin caked to your soul. It doesn’t matter how good you are, how much you donate to charity, how kind you are to others, how often you go to church, how often you pray. If you do not repent to Jesus and accept Him as your saviour, you are lost. I now know that if I had died before repenting, before being washed of my sins, I would be burning and breathing brimstone right now. It’s not enough just to believe. You have to repent with your heart to Jesus. You say you don’t believe in Him. I didn’t either until just a few years ago. I used to make jokes about Him. No more. When I hear the word “hell”, I cringe in fear.

Since that moment when I was forgiven, I have become a new person inside. I pray daily, I read the Bible, I attend church regularly, and am always conscious of the way God wants me to live. I never, ever thought that I would receive such a gift. It was free and unconditional. I will never forget this. Please believe me when I say He loves you so much. All you have to do is come to Him as a sinner, repent, and invite Him into your life. There is nothing more important than where you will spend eternity.

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