I think God has always been a part of my life. Growing up I used to attend a united church local to my area. My area was living out in the country 15 kilometers away from the closest town, however, on a side road near me was this church. The church was very prim and proper, everyone had to dress up to go and wear their Sunday best. The worship was always organ hymns and the preacher spoke in an uninteresting monotone. I guess thinking back it was a good place to meet everyone in the area and get out and do something else with my time.
Probably in my early teens or maybe around when I was ten years of age, my mother got in some argument with the minister, likely something to do with change or inclusion. She found herself upset and decided to go church shopping. After having visited about four different churches we landed in a Baptist church. This church was not like other churches. It had drums. For me, I started learning how to play the drums, as an outlet for my hyperactivity. This was how I ended up connecting with the people of that church.
Mostly while going there I would zone out and not really care about much that was going on, I didn’t really believe in God and thought that giving your life to someone didn’t make any sense for someone I didn’t even think was real.
The son of the minister there had begun running a youth group in another church. A church that was even freer. I was asked to go to this with them and my parents agreed. When I got there I saw people dancing, waving flags, electric guitars and really good worship. I was hooked. At this point, I hadn’t even considered who God was.
That minister’s son spoke to me again which got me thinking. As I recall I don’t remember feeling manipulated or brainwashed into it. I just came to the conclusion based on positives and negatives. If God wasn’t real and I gave myself to him, it wouldn’t change anything. And if I gave myself to him and he was, then I’d be guaranteed a ticket to heaven. I really liked the idea of heaven but still wasn’t sure. So one night alone, I had asked Jesus into my heart. I did it and felt nothing. I thought I was supposed to feel some change. I did this again and again for about two weeks.
Finally, after that time, I was told by the minister’s son that I didn’t have to keep asking, that, that was it. As time went on I began to learn about worship and about God’s word and how to apply it to my life. There was a huge social part of being connected with all those youth and I had an amazing time connecting with others. As I began to understand the teachings of the bible I began to have this burning desire in me to become a minister myself.
Every year since about the age of 15 we would all go to this conference in Toronto called Fresh Wind. it was held on the weekend of Easter and I would go and come back changed. One time I came back full of the holy spirit, shaking and twitching uncontrollably for a week. It got to a point where I myself was a bit scared because I didn’t know what was happening. To be honest, I still can’t tell you exactly why things happened, but I have my speculations.
At the age of 19, I went to a Pentecostal bible college having done terribly in high school I thought it wouldn’t be hard for me to do bible college since I knew most the material and I was going to become a worship leader and play drums. Boy was I wrong. I flunked most of my classes, didn’t even get to participate in any worship learning and found a girlfriend. We dated for about 3 months, but during that time we were having intercourse and I felt bad about it so I told one of my mentors in confidence. She then told the dean of the school and I was then kicked out of bible college. I brought up points like, everyone is a sinner. And casting the first stone. And God’s forgiveness, however, they didn’t see things my way. Or in the way that I thought God would see things.
Today I no longer goto the Fresh W
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