The photograph above is of my parents, family and friends, after getting married in the register office near London in 1957. My Dad 26 and Mum 18.
I was born in the UK in 1959. My parents, sister and I emigrated to Australia in 1966. Arrived back in the UK in 1971 and a brother was born who we called Martin in 1972. Martin was born with congenital heart disease and on a number of occasions was expected to die. He did not and miraculously lived to be 25 years old when he went to be with the Lord. He never went to school and had a different life to most children. He positively impacted my life in so many ways as Martin dealt with his limitations with a smile and a joke.
When I was about 22 years old I had a good career in IT as a COBOL Lead Programmer in South Africa, but I was lonely and empty!
I thought, was this all that life was about? Working, eating, playing sport and sleeping. I did not know at the time that God was working in my life. So I started to search for something more in life. I must state at this time I had never been to church in any form as my parents were not religious at all. I knew nothing about Christianity. I read furiously about the history of the world and what other people believed.
I came across a couple of old Christian books. They were about Jesus and what he taught. I started to read the bible. Initially I could not really understand what it was saying, but I knew in my heart that there was truth there. So I continued to read the bible and other Christian teaching books. A well known Teacher and Evangelist came to Johannesburg in August 1984. They held the tent meeting at the Johannesburg show grounds at night. So one night I went by myself in the rain. I sat at the back of the meeting by myself and listened to the message. I don’t remember what he preached on but I felt something touch me deep inside. So when at the end of the service they asked who wanted to accept Jesus as their Lord, I put up my hand and walked up to the front of the meeting with lots of people watching. He prayed a simple prayer and then they led us off to a side tent where we were individually spoken to explaining what had just happened. That my spirit had been recreated anew and I was born again as Nicodemus was told about by Jesus.
I felt a peace, love and a joy which could not be explained. I felt clean and that I had come home. I no longer felt insignificant, but loved and I had a meaning for my life.
Being a Christian is challenging, but exciting to see how people change when they come to know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.
I have a great wife Sarah who has made such an impact on my life. We met via an internet dating site in November 2005. Sarah had prayed for a tall South African over 6′ 4″ who was kind and I had prayed for a woman who had children and would accept me as I am and was outgoing. We got married on 31st December 2005. Sarah creates post for the women’s section of this blog on all sorts of subjects related to women and living out their godly lives.
I have managed large teams of people as an IT Manger at major international organisations /companies and have learnt some very hard lessons. I have worked in the Middle East, Australia, UK, Canada, Egypt and South Africa.
I have carried out water baptisms, prayed for people to receive the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. Sarah and I have prayed for people in the street for healing and carried out deliverance as commanded by Jesus in Matthew 28 and Mark 16.
It has all been such a blessing to see what a difference Jesus makes it each persons life!!
I pray you learn something that is useful and applicable in your life.
Raymond The Brave