How Has God Been So Patient?
By Reed Wortman, Canada
My early Life
I was born and raised by very wonderful, Godly parents. I was raised in the Pentecostal church and went to an old, established church in Toronto until Kathy and I got married at 21.
All through my young life I was very involved in the church, as my parents were. Actually, my whole family was fairly well known in Pentecostal circles, which probably supplied most of the motivation for my busyness, especially in my teenage years.
You see, even while the president of the young people's group and an active participant in the church's music program, I lived an entirely different life during the week... in rebellion against God. I guess the rules and regulations of the church (that's the way I perceived a relationship with God) turned me off and made the supposed freedom of the world that much more attractive.
When we got married it wasn't long before we were getting sucked into the fast life. When we moved out of Toronto, it wasn't long until we weren't even keeping up the appearance of living for God. From then on, for another ten to twelve years, I searched for something to take the place of God. Something that could supply the meaning of life but not demand anything of me.
Dabbling with the Occult
I got into Mind Awareness, the Occult, Lobsang Rampa and Astral Traveling...all of that stuff. For a time it satisfied me. However, the booze, sex and partying took a toll on our marriage and by the time we moved to Cambridge, in 1978, Kathy and I were in serious trouble.
Kathy was first to get involved with a church in Cambridge. She then asked the pastor of that church to counsel us in our marriage difficulties.
I remember picturing this preacher as a man completely dressed in black, carrying a three foot square bible and waggling his finger in my face. He didn't turn out that way at all. However, even with all of his wonderful counselling, I was still bound and determined to set out on my own.
The world was telling me that "I am all I have for sure" so I was going to look after me, no matter what. At a hockey tournament, while I was watching my son play hockey, God decided that He'd had enough. Somehow, He changed my mind around 180 degrees.
One second I was thinking about and planning my freedom and the next I was phoning Kathy to tell her that I love her. How do you figure that? That's what I call a miracle!!
Even after an intervention like that I still didn't turn my life over to God. I may have thought I had, but I replaced the partying with work and became a workaholic. I replaced God with my job as number one in my life, and found myself being a weekend Christian again. How stubborn can one be?
Over the past year, God has dramatically intervened in my life again and has brought me to a place where I have realised my decadence and helplessness and I have put Him on the throne of my life.
Praise His Name!! My life has been exchanged:
For I am crucified with Christ and I no longer but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me. Gal.2:20
I praise God for His active love and His incredible patience. I am praying for His Will to be done in my life