Earth Shaking, Doors Opening, & Breaking Free! Acts16:26


Evans Testimony 

Forest Gump once stated "life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get." In my eighteen years of living few words have rang that true, troubled times have appeared as often as one of those coconut clusters do in that heart shaped box; by the way I hate coconut. My life has been filled with the good, the bad, and the stuff that makes a grown man want to cry. All my life, as I have already stated, has been one struggle after the next, filled to the brim with pain and suffering. I grew up with two brothers and two sisters (all older than me of course) that I came to admire individually at different points in my life.


 At thirteen, in the midst of the hardship, and struggle I found no place to put my trust or weight on. While enrolled at a new school where I knew no one, and with my homework piling higher than can be climbed, I fell downward. My days were spent trying to find joy or anything that would help me escape this black hole of suicidal depression that I had fallen into. Nights would pass as slow as they possibly could to make my life ten times as miserable. With my parents fighting with each other or abusing me, I looked for substance. I just knew that in this world of 6.5 billion people there had to be something that could help me.


 Many times I came close to actually ending it all, believing that suicide was the only escape, but I never followed through with it. My next attempt at happiness was something that the younger Evan would have shunned drugs and alcohol. I resisted alcohol because of its nasty taste and drugs for the terrible rumors that I had heard; I turned to suicide once more. This time I was determined, but as I put the knife to my throat I began to cry like a school girl, I was afraid of this thing we call death. There on my bedroom floor with tears flooding down my face I thought of one option that had never occurred to me before, why not try to find this god everyone Claims to exist. So as the tears kept flowing freely I cried out "GOD IF YOUR REAL, THEN YOU HAVE GOT TO HELP ME!!" and as I let out my cry of depression, a small voice (that no one has ever proven to be fake) said "I've been here." That voice soothed me for the night and I put my knife away and crawled into my bed.


 It had been a few weeks since my encounter with this god I knew nothing about, I had kept my knife sealed in that same drawer and I waited for another encounter with god. An opportunity arose, to see if I had just dreamed the whole thing when my brother in-law Silas invited me to church. My previous self would have outright refused their offer but in my last-stringed state I humbly accepted. It was a breezy Sunday afternoon when I walked into Cornerstone Pentecostal Church. To my surprise I didn't burst into flames when I entered the church. I was wearing gray and orange parachute pants, a necklace, a shirt with a half naked lady on the back, and had bleached white spiky hair that made me look like satan's personal porcupine.


As the music started playing, the people stood up, I of course did the same, the music was singing of how awesome Jesus is, and I saw people that had their arms raised, others running the aisles, some were dancing and I thought "these people are nuts!" Instead of running away I stuck around, the preacher got up and started preaching really loud and hard about a God that still heals, a God that still delivers, and a God that still saves. After he was done preaching with all of his might he invited everyone to come down to the alter, so I did. The preacher told me to lift my hands, and as I lifted my hands something came over me and even though it felt weird, I began to repent. As I was telling god how sorry I was and while I was asking for his forgiveness on my life I started speaking in some language I didn't know (speaking in tongues, infilling of the Holyghost-Acts 2). Instantly I felt depression leave, and power, and joy entered my body.


After that Sunday, Silas and Tabitha took me to their home and gave me a bible study on why I had to be baptized in Jesus name. They let me know that without being "born again" I could never go to heaven (John 3:1-8), and that baptism in the name of Jesus washes away your sins (Acts 2:38). That next Friday, I didn't hesitate, I had the mindset of "lead me to the water" and on Friday August 16th, 2002 I Evan Hood was "born again" In the name of Jesus Christ!


It has been four wonderful years since I received the Holy Ghost and was baptized in the powerful name of Jesus. Even though I had to struggle with the abuse and neglect that haunts my past I am so glad it led me to my Jesus! In these four years I have really let God make something out of my once shattered life, I am called of God to preach and have already done so seven times, and will continue in that path for the rest of my life. I have also become a much better person and I try to let god change my life daily. Life is definitely full of unexpected things and obstacles. No matter what comes your way just know that God is there, and is waiting to change you! A good phrase that I live by now is "when God gives you lemons, make lemonade." I personally Believe that the strongest people that will ever grace this earth are not the athletic or the intelligent, I believe they are the people who face adversity and struggle head on and allow God to make a testimony out of them.

P.S. I wrote this about 3 years ago so I've actually been in church for about 7 years! I've been preaching and living for God and plan to full time evangelize within the next 2-5 years!


You can get ahold of Evan by connecting with him on myspace.