grew up in Bellevue, Washington during the 1950's and
1960's. Although I could count on one hand the number
of times I went to church growing up, I always believed
there must be a God, and hoped for some kind of existence
beyond the grave.
After finishing high school I
went to college, and because my life lacked purpose
and direction I changed my major several times, finally
settling on English. After graduating I found it difficult
to get a satisfying job, but after I took several courses
in computer programming I went back for more studies.
Like many people, I believed that the key to happiness
lay in finding a job that I liked, yet in my heart I
was never really convinced that this would bring me
I went on for further studies in
Computer Science at the University of Oregon, where
an opportunity opened up for foreign exchange study
in Germany. Since I'd long been interested in Europe
and in living abroad, this seemed like a perfect opportunity
for me. So at the age of 27, I moved to Stuttgart, Germany
as a foreign exchange student. Less than a year and
a half later I had landed my dream job and moved to
in Germany was lots of fun, so much so that you could
say it represented the culmination of my lifetime dreams.
I was working at a job that I enjoyed and since I was
in Europe I could satisfy my cravings for travel, old
buildings, museums and meeting people of different cultures.
I was also giving myself over to the never-ending and
very unsatisfying quest after the lusts of the flesh.
Although you'd say I enjoyed life,
I came to realize that I was a very a self-centered
and empty person. Relationships were a frequent source
of conflict and anger and people were little more than
objects to be used and exploited. Life was to be used
up, and other people were simply there to serve my own
pleasures and purposes.
I met quite a few people in Germany
who have turned out to be faithful, lifetime friends,
including Arthur from Stuttgart. After I moved to Munich
we maintained frequent contact and often paid visits
to each other. I observed Arthur as he gradually became
interested in spiritual things and eventually became
a Christian. I saw how God had dramatically changed
his life, and I was curious, even jealous. Since Arthur
was also very zealous about sharing his newfound faith
with me he gave me a New Testament and urged me to read
Over the course of several years
I started to explore what it meant to be a Christian.
I observed the conviction with which Christians prayed
and communicated with God, and I wanted that assurance
also. As I began to pray and read the Bible the following
verses brought conviction to my heart and stirred me
on in my search for God:
"But everyone who hears these
words of mine and does not put them into practice is
like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The
rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew
and beat against that house, and it fell with a great
crash." - Matthew 7:26-27
7+ years was more than enough time
to have lived in Germany and so I moved back to America,
expecting God to do great things in my life. But I found
that moving home didn't solve any of my problems - in
fact it made them worse! After losing more jobs and
experiencing more sour relationships, God's call on
my life became overwhelmingly evident. At the end of
August in 1984 I finally realized that I needed to turn
my life over to Jesus Christ, so I accepted Him into
my life as my personal Lord and Savior.
My life is no longer empty because
Jesus is there to fill it up. I have slowly become more
aware of the significance of other people because of
God's committed love for me as well as for them. I no
longer try to exploit others, but to help and to serve
them, as Christ served me when He gave His life for
God's grace I am learning to control the self-centeredness
and depression that used to plague me and burden others.
Even though the outward circumstances of my life may
not appear so different, life has a much different quality,
because in all circumstances I know that God is always
there with me. Life is no longer a commodity to be used
up until it is depleted. Life has an ultimate purpose
and meaning: to live forever for the glory of God!
After Becky and I served God for
two years in Japan as English teachers, David studied
at Dallas Theological Seminary. After relocation to
South Carolina, God opened wide a door for a teaching
ministry in Germany, and in 2016 we planned and carried
out a mission of love in the Philippines.
May this testimony of God's work
in my life encourage your heart!
Blessings and shalom from,
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