Introduction: Bruce

(Jamey Bruce Green) #1

Hi everyone. Here is my testimony:

In June of 1974, when I was 9 years old, my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He said to my mom: “Well, I guess you should start taking the kids to church.” So she took my brother and I to Vacation Bible School. On the very first day, they told about a man named Jesus who was born 2,000 years ago and was still alive today. They said that anyone who came forward could get to know him. I thought to myself, “Yeah, who wouldn’t want to know a guy like that? Just think of all the stuff he must know.” So I went forward in the innocence of a child and I began my walk with Christ. I did get to know him. In fact, my whole family did. First my brother and I were baptized and then both my parents.

My dad passed away a year later. We laid him to rest at the church in rural Alabama where my grandparents and great grandparents worshiped. I stayed strong in the faith for several years, but as a teenager I began to drift away from God.

I decided that I could make my own spiritual path. For 30 years, I wandered. I lived is several states and traveled to several countries. Along the way, I think the only commandment that I did not break was “Thou shalt not kill.” I eventually, I met a girl in Maryland and got married, but I did not turn back to God. We had two children, but I did not turn back to God. I even survived my own fight with cancer, but still I did not turn back to God.

In 2013, I took my family back to Alabama for a vacation. To my surprise, they loved it. On our last day there, I went to the Sunday service at the church where my dad is buried. I felt a sense of belonging that I had not felt in decades. During the sermon, the preacher made a simple statement: “Worship is the way that we make our hearts suitable abodes for the King of Heaven.” It wasn’t even a main point of the sermon, but it struck me like lightning. I realized that Jesus still lived in my heart, but in my foolish arrogance I had let my heart become as run down as a backwoods shack. I could imagine Jesus smiling at me. I felt him say, “Took you long enough. I’ve been here the entire time just waiting for you to turn around.”

Since then my outlook on life has changed completely. I found a church just a mile from my house that I love attending and I can’t get enough Bible study.

(Jimmy Sellers) #2

From one wander to another welcome home. There is plenty of room at the Lord’s table. I am sure that God will bless your time on Connect both in what you learn and what you contribute. God is good.

(Joshua Spare) #3

That is a fantastic testimony to read, @j.bruce; thank you for the encouragement that your story has given to me! What a testimony to the fact that God never gives up on us or forsakes us, but is willing to accept anyone with a contrite heart!

I’m excited that you have found your way to Connect, and I look forward to hearing more from you as you begin to engage here with this community! Welcome, brother!

(Carson Weitnauer) #4

Hi @j.bruce,

Welcome. Thank you for sharing your story. It gives me hope for some people in my life, whom I love, but who do not appear (to me) to have any spiritual interest. I am so encouraged that you are actively engaged in your church and Bible study. I believe God has a plan for your life to be filled with worship and service to others.

I think you will find it very fulfilling to encourage others in their evangelism in Connect. May God use you to help many others invite their friends and family back home.