Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. Revelation 3:20
This is how I remember my mother explaining to me, when I was growing up, that Jesus loved me and wanted to come into my life. Although my parents brought me up going to church and Sunday school, it was important for me, as for all of us, to make an individual choice to accept Jesus as my personal Saviour. This I did at a young age, and the main thing I remember knowing was that Jesus then came into my heart and He forgave my sins.
Our family went to a Church of England church. To me it seemed to be mainly about reciting the words of the service, which was the same every week, and going up to get a blessing from the vicar, while the adults took Holy Communion. I did benefit by learning from the Bible at Sunday school, and I grew up with knowledge of God and His word, for which I am grateful. When I was 13 years old, I went to the first Zerubbabel British Easter conference with my family. Being a Christian started to make more sense then, as I learned that I am made up of a body, a soul and a spirit. I learned and began to understand that when I accepted Christ as my personal Saviour, my human spirit became joined to Jesus Christ in the form of the Holy Spirit.
And Christ Himself was now in me to live His life out through me. I had always believed that I was just me to live my life the best I could on my own. But the truth is I have never been a just Kim. Before I accepted Christ as my Saviour, my spirit was joined to Satans spirit, and it was he living out by me. Now, it is Christ. Does this mean that I will never sin again? Of course not. Satan can still get control of my members when I choose to sin, but his control is limited because he can no longer control me at my spirit center. He can only get to me from the outside! I have learned more about how this works by attending conferences every year since that. I have been very privileged to receive excellent Bible teaching and guidance on living daily life at these conferences.
But despite my Christian upbringing and everything I had learned about what it means to be a Christian, I started to live a worldly life of sin. When I started secondary (high) school, I became driven by gaining the attention of boys and wanting them to find me physically attractive. Whilst to some extent this is normal teenage behaviour, for me it was the main focus in my life. A diary that I wrote at the time totally revolved around who I liked, who liked me and who I was going out with. I also started drinking illegally, when I was underage, and lying to my parents about where I was going. What really interested me was when I would get to go out drinking and who would be the next guy that liked me and I could flirt around with.
When I went to university (college), my behaviour escalated and I was drinking regularly and going to night-clubs. As a Christian, I should have been setting a right example to my non-Christian friends and fellow students, but instead I validated them in behaving the same way I was. At this point, I got involved with a boyfriend, who was not a Christian, and our relationship became progressively more intense emotionally and physically. I thought I could still control what I did and I tried to convince myself that I could remain respectable, but because Satan was really in control, he chose where to take me. As much as I tried to fool myself, deep down I knew that the relationship was not right in Gods eyes (sin). During that time I would often get upset because of the agony of trying to enjoy something that I knew was wrong. I even cried to my boyfriend, Chris, who didnt understand. The worst thing was that I had told him I was a Christian, but I did not live Gods way. Nor did I ever tell him about Jesus Christ for his salvation. Aside from that, God tells us not to be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14).
At the next Easter conference, God convicted me that I had to end the relationship, or else deliberately turn against God. I had to choose between my fleshly desires and Godly desires I could not have both. Of course I was really choosing between having Jesus Christ or Satan control my life and make my choices. Although I am forever joined to Christ at my spirit center, Satan had got into my members and was living out sin through me. I knew immediately what was the right thing to do, but it took me a while to overcome my strong feelings against carrying it out.
A song that was very significant to me at that conference was I Have Decided to Follow Jesus because that is what I did! Once I had made my choice, I needed to confess my sin, and although it felt hard, I did this so that I could accept Gods forgiveness. When Chris came to pick me up, I told him that I was ending the relationship because it was against God and I was choosing not to go on living that way. This represented a big commitment to going Gods way at that point in my life. The support of my fellowship was very important in helping me to make that choice and in sticking with it.
When I went back to university, it felt very hard to be around the same places and people as before, living a different way. The only way this was possible was that it wasnt ME living, but Jesus Christ. I am thankful that I also had the support of a mentor, within our fellowship, who I spoke to every day. After I had ended my relationship with Chris, I actually had a chance to tell him more about Jesus and why He was so important in my life. Through Gods grace, Chris actually accepted Christ as his Saviour! I also made further decisions to clean up my life, by stopping drinking and taking a stand not to live in a shared house with a guy. All of these changes in my life were a strong testimony to my other friends at university (college). One friend that I lived with did not like the fact that I didnt participate in the same behaviour anymore, as Im sure it convicted her about herself!
When I graduated and started working, my life looked cleaned upI had stopped drinking, I was no longer going to night-clubs, and I was not involved in a wrong relationship anymore. However, I was still driven by getting attention from guys and my behaviour reflected that. This was more serious now because I was doing a job where most of the males that I met were married, with families. I did confess this sin and even did a thorough inventory of what I had specifically done. I stopped my more obvious behaviour, but I was basically trying to give up sin by self-effortme trying to change. Eventually, I didnt even try any more, and I remained a slave to the same sin, which had become like an addiction. It was partly fuelled by the fact that I remained single and as I got older, I thought my chances of having a boyfriend, or one day a husband, were diminishing. Basically, I saw my ideal life situation as being married. I wasnt trusting that God knows whats best for me and that He will work out His perfect plan.
Since all sin is Satan living out (through our members, when we are a Christian), it was destroying my life. I did not have fellowship with my Christian friends and I did not look forward to any time we would be together. Instead I wanted to flee from their light. This totally wrecked my relationships with the Christ-people who truly care about me, particularly my friend Jo, who was living with me at the time. My sin had serious, negative consequences on everyone around me because I didnt want the best for others. Instead I wanted the worst. I was not pouring out love (Christ), but hate (Satan). This was manifested through meanness in my heart toward other people and a general attitude of elevating myself, by putting someone else down. I also lied about my sin and kept it hidden, until God graciously exposed it to me.
After trying to change again, I told myself that I could never be any different, and that Gods way would never work. I seriously considered giving up to go my own, really Satans way. When I honestly looked at my sin though, the truth was that I didnt want to give it up. At the eleventh hour God asked if I was willing to be made willing to be rid of my sin. I agreed to this much, knowing that I couldnt stand the sick feeling of not being right with God. I also knew that one day I would have to face Him and account for my life, which would be a scary prospect if I had spurned the truth He had taught me all my life.
Despite my fears, I have found that when I step out and trust Jesus Christ, He is faithful to give me what I need in Him; He is sufficient to deal with a situation, and He can keep me safe from Satans grasp. Despite my previous behaviour toward my fellowship, I have received much love and encouragement to continue in the choice that I made. I am so grateful to God for His forgiveness and for saving me from the misery and bondage of sin. I now have His peace and am trusting moment by moment that Christ can live through me and be for others in His right way. I have also since witnessed that God views sin by what is in our inner hearts, not just our outer actions. For a long time I was living outwardly clean, whilst knowing that I would pursue a sinful relationship if I had the opportunity. Jesus tells us that we have already sinned when we make the decision to do a thing in our hearts (see Matthew 5:27-28).
Once I had fully confessed my sin, I expressed a desire to leave my current job, which involves frequently spending time alone with males. Within minutes God presented an opportunity for me to completely change my career and not only avoid being alone with men, but to be in a totally female environment! I am now working toward opening my own Curves business. Curves is the worlds fastest growing franchise and is a fitness and weight loss facility designed especially for women. This is such an exciting opportunity for me to own my own business and a God-given privilege within which to serve other women. God has been so gracious in presenting this to me, and I want to encourage anyone that has sin on their heart to confess, that God may have something exciting in store for you on the other side! So far God has been faithful unfolding all the details of His plan. I am now in line to lose my current job through redundancy at the end of the year, when I will receive a cash pay out from the company. I have also found the perfect property in which to open my Curves. I certainly regret the years I spent in sin, away from God, and the consequences I have had on other people. I hope now that God can use me in His plan to reach out and positively affect others, and I wouldnt want to miss it.
Throughout my life, I see how God has faithfully cleaned me up to make me a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work. Not only does He knock to come into our hearts, but He deals with us until He is the only Ruler of our hearts.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 19 No 4
- What about Temptation?
- Editors Note
- The Gates of Hell Prevailing. Why? And How To Close Them.
- Tape Talk
- Temptation and Its Beneficial Effects
- Reminiscences of Rees Howells The War Years, 19391945
- A Look at a Book
- Living Letters
- Wickedness in High Places
- Every Man is Tempted
- Kims Story
- Letters from Norman