By Saju Asokan
Have you ever met God and felt his presence in your life? By His grace, I have. I want to share with you my experience I had when I met God, knew how much He loves me and felt His power that surpasses reasoning - In short this is My testimony that God not only exists... but really lives and He loves and cares about each one of us.ed
Turning the pages back...
As always, let's start with some history... Are we going to talk about what happened in 1948?? Nope... We are going to talk about what happened in and after 1984... I was born!!! ... Nothing really happen much, except that I started with my small... very little life.
I was born into a family with quite a bit of problems. To be precise- A hell lot of problems. Facing them, crying over them and learning from them, I slowly grew up. Though I was born in a Hindu family, I never used to go to temples except when someone really forces me to. Since my dad has always been an atheist, I was never brought up in a religious background. I grew up totally free from all belief systems and rituals. Hence you can say that I was also a 'little atheist' all through my childhood. I continued to be so, until God gave me the first chance to feel Him.
The darkest four years in my life opened wide in front of me when I stepped into my teenage. (Since, our topic is not related much to that, I prefer not to discuss any details). I had to go through very tough times in my family. The situation deprived me of love and care, added turbulence, tension and uncertainty in my little life. In my immature age, my family circumstances demanded seriousness and maturity out of me in an age when I was to play, enjoy, learn and grow. I remember days when I used to cry in my school-classes thinking about my cursed days, while friends who belong to my age would merrily roam around. I saw nothing but darkness in front of me.
It was the time when I came to know about Jesus and His love. My grandmother has been a believer, who got saved by Jesus, from a suicide decades back. She taught me the story of the life of Jesus and the gospel. In the midst of all my pain and suffering, though I understood very little of the real meaning of the gospel, I held it close to my heart. During the darkest nights and the most disturbing emotional storms, the hope in a living God helped me to move forward. Years passed by and I reached my mid-teens. My family circumstances started to improve slowly...
I started to think a lot during these days... About the meaning of life... my existence... and so on. I trusted in my logic and rational thinking above anything and it was the starting point when I ignored my God who carried me in His arms, through all my tough times. I started rationalizing everything - love, sex, marriage and started debating with others on various topics... And I was proud in my false belief that what I believed was always true. I started to read books of Osho and the like... and my greatest happiness turned out to be, the moment when I debate with my grandma and defeat her and assert that God doesn't exist. She found herself speechless in front of my rational thoughts and my lengthy circus with words. I depended on myself, my knowledge and my talents and totally denied the power above.
Sweet Sweet Love
I was good at studies and joined for my Bachelor's in Engineering, with lots of dreams about my life, career and all. Due to my logical thinking I always rejected love and considered it only as a need for life's existence. I liked to think about death and used to think about humans being as nothing but flesh and bones, however beautiful they seem outside. Due to this mentality I never wanted to be in love. But... since God's ways were much ahead and above mine, I also fell in love - madly in love. I felt that she was the most beautiful, the most wonderful, the most loving and caring human being on the planet. We were in love for almost three years and in that time we weaved lots of dreams and built sky scraping castles in our imagination. She was all I loved, cared and trusted. I saw all the love I missed from my family in her. In short, she meant a world to me. Whoever might abandon me in my life, I was damn sure that this person will never forsake me. There were times when I boasted in front of my friends that if ever we both are alive, we would definitely marry and live happily. God should have been smiling then. In short, I made the biggest mistake... I valued the gift, but not the giver - the Almighty.
Learning bitter lessons of life
And one day, it happened. She chose her own way and walked away... Without a word, a letter or a gaze with concern or tears of pain. That was the heaviest blow I ever faced in my life. I felt like my world was collapsing and the ground beneath my feet was slipping away. When I watched the one, whom I trusted more than myself, walking away so easily with her own life and dreams, I even thought about putting an end to my life. It was a time when I was left with no faith or trust in anything. The one that meant a world to me was a huge void now. I had no idea what to do. My endless regrets, sorry and requests for another chance remained unheard.
Everything with a purpose
But I never knew that it was the way God wanted me to search for him from the depth of my heart. I started sharing my pain with my grandma. She again told me about Jesus and faith. I was too stubborn to look back to God's love. So I denied and tried to solve everything myself. I kept on demanding for proof for the existence of God. Months passed by. I was fuming like a furnace but I couldn't shed a single tear - didn't know why. One day I felt that I should go and meet my grandma and I went to her. I asked her to sing a song - a Christian song that I used to sing when I was previously in faith. That song says about a person leaving God and finally returning back searching for Him. As I started listening to that song, tears started to slowly roll down my cheeks... Yes I was ventilating the tears that I was not able to shed during all these painful days.
Ripples in faith
Next week, I started attending a church in my locality. Since I was awaiting the joining date for my job, I had enough time to spend in God's presence. Though I would go to church, pray and listen to sermons, I knew that I was incomplete in faith. I was always doubtful. Every day I would talk to the pastor for hours after the session and clear doubts... After the worship, I had seen people coming to the pastor and pastor placing his hands on their head and them fainting down as if they got electrified. Though my friends told me that it was due to the power of the Holy Spirit, I always laughed at the back of my mind. I never got convinced that God really exists. My belief used to waver uncontrollably. And I was very unhappy about that fact. It went on for another month or so.
One day my pastor asked me to attend a worship that was being lead by a well known spiritual leader - Mr. Noble Thomas. I went there in the morning by around 9.00 along with my grandma. It was a quite big hall with more than a thousand people present for worship. It started with songs followed by my pastor's service. While he was preaching, at one point of time, I felt a huge power surging through my body. It started as a slight tingling feeling, but gradually increased into a trance state. I was able to hear and see all that went around me, but I was not in total control. The experience was frightening to me and I started sweating profusely. It lasted for a few minutes. Once I came back from that state, I was scared and confused about what has just happened to me. Nothing has ever happened in my life as strange as that. Initially I doubted whether this is what they call as 'anointing by the holy spirit'. But I was doubtful about that because I was not at all in good faith, and hence how could God possibly anoint me. A thousand questions went through my mind.
Once the service got over, I went to my pastor and shared my experience with him. He said that it might be a small touch from the God. It was around 11.00 by then. Bro. Noble Thomas' session was just about to start. Though I had planned to return to home before noon, I changed my decision and continued attending the session. Bro. Noble Thomas gave a marvelous sermon and it was concentrated around dedicating oneself to God, serving Him and about spiritual warfare. It brought light into various questions I had in my mind concerning my faith. Somewhere in between the sermon, Bro. Noble Thomas mentioned that he came there that day, not for giving healing or deliverance, but to bring forth leaders who has already been chosen by the almighty. And he mentioned that those people would have already received the signs of that. This statement only increased anxiety and confusion in my heart.
Time passed by and we reached the end of the service. In the end, Bro. Noble Thomas would bless everyone who attended the worship, by placing his hands on their heads. When I watched, I saw that he prophesized about many, and many of them fell down out of anointing when he placed his hands on their head. My heart was still doubtful, but I felt a slight amount of fear, since I already had a frightening experience in the morning. So I went to the rear end of the queue. In the mean-time I saw that Brother placed his hands on a woman and prophesized all that happened in her life and I got amazed because, it seemed just like my grandma's life story. So I tried my best to see who the person was, and I saw that it was none other than her. Initially I felt that it was all miraculous, but slowly my rational mind started asking me a thousand logical questions, and I even doubted that it was a kind of arrangement between them.
Slowly the queue was moving and so was I. When I saw that there were just a bunch of people ahead of me in the queue, I started getting slightly tensed. I saw many people falling down and being supported by the volunteers standing there. I made a firm decision in my mind that I would never faint or fall. I repeatedly kept on saying in my mind that these people are having some hysterical response, due to their blind faith and stupidity. I was sure I wouldn't feel anything if he places his hands on me.
Finally I turned up in front of him. As it was customary, I closed my eyes and he placed his thumb and index finger on the two sides of my head. Initially all I could see was darkness, obviously because my eyes were closed. Suddenly I could see two oblique lights in the two ends of my eyes, or may be in my head. And they started alternating very fast and the heavy surge of power started flowing through my head. This time it was a hundred times more powerful than before. I could hear everything that went around me, but I was not in control. I couldn't even throw away his hands. All I could do was going through it and submit to the power of the spirit. I heard brother prophesying about my mission in life... My God's purpose with my little life. In this whole time while he was prophesying, my head was exploding with the power I cannot describe exactly in words. Then he immediately took his hands off my head and I could feel that I was totally powerless even to support my own body. My legs and my whole body got drained and I fell into the arms of the volunteers. I felt as if I was powered from an outlet and it got suddenly disconnected.
It didn't end there. I could hear brother saying 'Not enough' and he motioned them to bring me forward. I was struggling hard to push myself back while they literally overpowered me and Brother placed his hands once again on my head. The explosions were getting stronger and I was getting more receptive to the power of the spirit. This happened thrice and then he placed his hands on my chest and said 'Receive the holy spirit'. The moment his hands touched my chest, I could feel the power of the almighty spreading from the center of my chest to every cell in my body. I remember that I was crying out because the feeling was something I couldn't stand - a feeling which you can only understand if you experience it. God was giving me the proof I always asked for, and that too in plenty, so that I would never question it again.
Then he touched my hands and prophesized about the works I have to do with them, and the same power flow happened through my hands too. In the end, I was deprived of energy to hold myself up and the volunteers carried me away and gave me a chair to sit down. They gave me water to drink. My whole body was tingling with a static current and it persisted all over my body. The moment I sat down I started to cry out loud... amidst all these people... not considering anything else... just like a kid. I have never been so regretful in my life. I was realizing how big an idiot I had been this long by declaring that God doesn't exist. He reached out to me from his divinity to let me know not only that he does exist, but he truly loves and cares for me.
A new dimension to life
After this incident in my life, my life itself has changed a great deal... I got baptized and received Jesus as my savior and redeemer, with my whole heart. Things that I found myself difficult to control in my life, I started being able to give up with God's grace and infinite power. The wounds that really made me search for Him, He soothed with His love and comfort. Now I don't worry thinking about my mistakes or what I have lost. What I have lost only brought me closer to my God. I realize now what really is precious and what is not... what will last and what won't. My God is all powerful. Those things He didn't want in my life, He removed. And since He's not only my creator, but my protector, my friend and provider, He knows what I need and at what time, much better than anyone else.
Dear friend, I do not know what kind of situation you are in. You may be a happy soul... with a life full of blessings and comforts... or may be in great distress, and yearning for something that you really miss in your life. After reading my story, you might be feeling skeptical and your logical mindset might tell you a thousand things that make you feel that my experiences are nothing but superstitions. I shared these experiences of mine with you not to make you believe that God exists, but to make you start searching for Him. I believed from my true touching experience. You start believing from your personal encounter with God. All I request you is that you start searching for Him with your whole heart. He is waiting out there eager to get his child back - that I can assure you - because He is love. All it takes is a heart full of desire to know the real truth.
Why waiting for tomorrow?
Everything changes except the Almighty. Period. No relation, nothing in this world or that belongs to this world, survives the limits of time and space. I know that this uncertainty makes us all uncomfortable, but that is the truth. Search for the unchanging. Search for the everlasting. All you have to do is take a single step with all your heart... and God will be ready to run even a hundred miles towards you and call you - 'My child.'
I'm so happy that I could share this with you. If you have any queries, please feel free to ask me. I will be more than happy to help you get back to God. If you are a person who had an encounter with God, and if you would like to share your experience with the rest of the world, kindly do let me know. You, having landed on this page and having read till here instead of browsing away is not merely an accident. Can you listen for a moment? Don't you hear Him calling? 'My Child!'
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