Pause for Thought with Ray Dadswell: “Wow – Jesus died for me!”

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“I’m Patrick, I’m 17 and currently in my second year of A-levels.

“I grew up in a Christian home so God was always part of my life. My father’s side of the family are Catholic and my mother has always gone to Victoria, so I went to both churches and to Catholic schools. This gave me a mixed childhood but it taught me a lot about God. In fact, I had what felt like all the knowledge about God and Jesus and all the stories from the Bible. And I believed that they were true. But they were just facts, in a way. They weren’t personal.

“I grew up in the church and then when I was thirteen years old we got a full-time youth pastor, Matt, and through his new youth services and as well as a Youth for Christ camp in Wales, I had a dramatic realisation: Jesus died for me – wow! My God loved me so much he came to earth and died for me. It was then I decided I was ready to give my life to him and let him lead me where

he wants.

“But that’s not it. A few months ago, I watched a preach by Louie Giglio on DVD at our youth group. He’s a well-known and very good American preacher. He said something that struck me. He said that when you get grace, it gets you. And that it’s so amazing you actually go a little crazy. It made me think, actually I am a little crazy, a little weird, but it hasn’t always been like that. So, I thought, well, it probably has been since around three years ago. At that time, I was 16, so three years before that was the time I fully realised what God had done for me and decided to follow him.

“Now you may think, well, that’s all great, but how is going crazy beneficial? Let me tell you it is but that’s not all. I realised that not only did I go a little crazy then but it was also the time I stopped letting the bad things at school and home get to me. I wasn’t depressed, or anything that serious, but neither was I truly happy even if I could pretend to be. Until I let God into my life. It didn’t matter so much any more. Sure I still get upset but the pain doesn’t linger. I just can’t help being happy.

“I can’t believe it took me so long to realise that that was God, because when I look back I know I couldn ‘t have done it alone.”

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Nothing like an up-to-date testimony, is there?

To follow, reproduced here, with permission are the words of a hymn written by Dr Ian White, pastor of Patrick’s church, a few years ago...

God immortal, God of grace Here we stand before your face With a joy that’s overflowing.

Come and fill this place and give us love unconditional, peace indescribable, joy uncontainable, hope indestructible, faith undeniable, Life that flows by grace from the heart of God.

When our hearts are wracked with pain, Facing trials which you ordain,

When we cry, ‘Lord, how much longer?’, Lift us to your plane where there is love unconditional, peace indescribable, joy uncontainable, hope indestructible, faith undeniable,

Life that flows by grace from the heart of God.

When we stand at heaven’s door, Facing grief and pain no more,

Over sin we’ll then have conquered, Jesus, victory ours to know his love unconditional, peace indescribable, joy uncontainable, hope indestructible, faith undeniable,

Life that flows by grace from the heart of God.

When we bow before your throne, Clothed in garments not our own,

Undeserving, bathed in wonder, Finally we’re home because of love unconditional, peace indescribable, joy uncontainable, hope indestructible, faith undeniable,

Life that flows by grace from the heart of God.