I Came Up Out of the Water Feeling Clean and Free

I count it a privilege to be included in this book and a pleasure to write about where God has brought me from.

I grew up feeling like I didn’t belong anywhere. My mother died when I was very young; my father remarried several years later. Though all who had to do with my upbringing did their best to care for me, I always felt like a fifth wheel, and lonely. I was quiet and a “nobody” in school. I married at a young age, seeking the love I so desperately needed. That marriage failed and I was divorced after several years.

I had two precious children, but not a lot to give them. In the years following my separation, I was often despondent. I sought for satisfaction in many things. What the world had to offer in the way of help in counseling and therapy only led me to consider suicide, because it was no help. I had attended many different churches, studied religions and what they believed, but never found anything life changing.

One night while attending a party I began to observe the situation around me - the very thing I had hoped would bring me enjoyment was instead disgusting to me. I was hungry to see something true and noble for once. That night a miracle had happened. On my way home from the party, I stopped by to read the service time on the sign in front of New Life Assembly.

Though I had been out until 1:00 AM, nothing could stop me from attending church the next morning. When I heard the preaching and saw people who evidently lived what they believed, I was very much impacted. Soon I was attending regularly and felt a need to be baptized. I was baptized in the name of Jesus and I came up out of the water feeling clean and free, with a certain knowledge that I no longer was stuck in the lifestyle I had been living. I received the baptism of the Holy Ghost shortly after, and found power and peace I had never known. My children were also very glad to become a part of this church. It was evident that they sensed the love and acceptance which surrounded us there.

Today I am living proof that God is a present help in time of need. My conversion is not an old experience - I experience God’s love anew every day and witness his work in my life and in those around me. I love Him and I love the Church. He is truly a miracle working God.

Joanne T.

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