Conversion Testimony

I was born into an immediate and extended family of professing Christians, although I rarely saw anybody attend church, (neither did I, I might add), if it wasn’t Easter or some other religious occasion. I was taught to say the prayer, “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord, my soul, to keep…”, by my father’s mother at the young age of 5. My mother’s mom later taught me to recite the Lord’s Prayer. My mother’s mom, my grandmother, was a Pentecostal Christian and what this particular denomination of Christianity represented, with the dreams and visions, became evident over the years as I listened to my grandmother recount stories of supernatural visitations from what appeared to be spirits. I always believed that there was a God and by birthright, I claimed Christianity as my faith, I even prayed to God and Jesus. I can now say that I knew much about God and Jesus, but had not met the Savior as of yet. I can remember being young and mom and dad splitting up, my mom my brother and I went to stay with a boyfriend of my mothers, while my sister moved in with my grandmother, who could use some help and companionship around the house, In return, my grandmother raised my sister like she was her own daughter.

We are living in Brooklyn and life is full of chaos for my mother, my brother and I for what seems like the better part of the six years that we stayed there. I was constantly fighting, or at least it seemed that way to me and it seemed as if the borough of Brooklyn had a big black cloud over it. My brother and my wardrobe left much to be desired, but although I never started any fights, I figured out real quick that if I didn’t back down that I could earn respect amongst my peers. After my grandfather passed away coinciding with the beginning of my seventh year in school, we moved in to his apartment in the Bronx, this was a significant event considering it was the first time that my mother my brother and I lived on our own.

For a mother with two growing boys and on public assistance I think she did an outstanding job of raising us, not that it wasn’t hard for everyone. I can remember coming in to the classroom and seeing the kids actually participating in what was being taught and thinking to myself:

“I had better get it together, these kids are actually about business”.

There was one individual, who I developed a friendship with through the common interest of basketball, who thought that because he was taller, bigger and had all the cool clothes, that he could try to intimidate me, boy was he in for a surprise! By the time the school day was over I had talked so much smack to this guy about what I was going to do to him after school, that when I actually approached him after school was let out and asked him “what do you wanna do?” he replied “nothing”.

I had a couple of fights that year and later I was jumped pretty bad by individuals that knew the guy that I had problems with earlier during the year. On the day after Christmas during the eighth grade I got into an altercation with some gentleman around my Aunt’s apartment and consequently was stabbed in the shoulder. The wound was half an inch deep, but what angered me was the idea of someone trying to do more than just give me a black eye. Oh by the way I happened to re-aggravate the boxer’s fracture that I had received from previous fights so I had to have my right hand wrapped in a soft cast to add insult to injury. Why couldn’t I have been given one of the cool hard casts that everyone could have signed? I ended up missing a significant part of the school year and would have been held back had I not made up a majority of the work.

During the time when we were getting ready to go back to school, I had saved up enough money to buy my brother and I some cool clothes for the start of the 9th grade and a few necessary items for school like books so I should have felt a sense of satisfaction but all I felt was emptiness. Somehow I made my way to a book shelf in my Grandmother’s old house, that my Aunt now lived in and pulled down a book by the name of “Beyond Death’s Door” by Maurice Rawlings. Beyond Death’s Door is a book about an atheist doctor who comes to faith after investigating a series of near death experiences and finding that people’s recollection of things that occur after you die were for the most part in line with what the Bible has to say.

The book grabbed my interest and was a tool I believe that God used to open my eyes to see my need for a savior. I prayed to Jesus that he would come into my life and save me from going to hell. I don’t know if I became saved at that very moment, but I definitely began to have a desire to do things that are pleasing to God. As I began to read the scriptures more and more, I began to try to implement what I was learning in to my own life. Ecclesiastes and Proverbs were essential in providing me “a young man without a father in the household” with fatherly advice.

I had the best year in school, grades wise, that I ever had and the teachers were wondering what had gotten in to me, I knew the answer to be Jesus!! I had plans of playing professional basketball when I got older and dedicated a lot of my time towards that goal. Over the following summer as I read the scripture, I felt God was calling me to be a minister and that I would have to give up my pursuit of a basketball career, because as the scripture tells us in Mathew 6:24 – “No one can serve two masters, because either he will hate one and love the other, or be loyal to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and riches!” I felt really strong about my decision at the time and do not regret giving up the dream of being a pro-basketball player and all the luxuries that comes with that lifestyle, i.e. money, women, but rather as Phillipians 3:8 communicates to us: “What is more, I continue to consider all these things as a loss for the sake of what is far more valuable, knowing the Messiah Jesus, my Lord. It is because of him that I have experienced the loss of all those things. Indeed, I consider them rubbish in order to gain the Messiah”.

Over the years I have struggled in my walk as a Christian and have not been the best example of what it is to know Jesus, but one thing that I have noticed since I made a verbal expression of my faith and asked Jesus to save me over 18 years ago is that although we may not be faithful to God at times, God is always faithful towards his children as expressed in Philippians 1:6: “I’m convinced that God, who began this good work in you, will carry it through to completion on the day of Christ Jesus.” You see my social economic condition contributed to me dropping out of High School and earning a G.E.D. This period of time in my life was a low point, as I struggled to walk the Christian walk it became tough to persevere. I eventually joined the military and took Jesus with me, with renewed confidence and faith in Jesus. I joined the Army Infantry and was introduced to all types of wholesome activities, pun intended.

When the drill sergeant asked me if I was a Christian I denied that I was, for fear of letting Jesus down by not being able to live up to the standard of being a Christian and consequently discouraging individuals who might have been looking at me with curiosity. I am currently an Army Signal Officer in the rank of Captain and can say that all the struggles in my life both personal and professional I can see have been placed there to position me for what God would have me to do. If I had not gone through the wilderness, I would not be as prepared for what God would have me to do for him right now, neither would I appreciate as much the blessings that are being given to me from God.

I started out with a G.E.D, I now hold two Bachelor Degrees, an Associates Degree and a M.A in Theology. I have a beautiful family in my wife Katja, daughters Ayleena and Angel and my son Sean. The biggest change in my life is that I know that ultimately God is in control of everything that occurs on this earth and that if something happens to me, it is God’s purpose at work. In Romans 8:28 God says: “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” This gives me a sense of peace that is referred to as the “peace that passes all understanding” and it is independent of external circumstances.

Would you like to have this peace, contentment and joy? Ask God if he will save you and bring you into a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. God says in John 3:16 “”For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” If you are worried that you are not good enough, or have done too many things wrong and God could never forgive someone like you, God gives us the reassurance that Jesus can forgive even the worst of sinners in 2 Corinthians 5:17: “Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.”

Friend you can experience a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ who is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. Jesus will never let you down no matter how many times you may come up short: Proverbs 24:16 “For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief”

This has been my witness on how I came to know the Lord Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of my life.

God’s Blessings in Jesus Christ

Brother Lashon Bush

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Written by Lashon Bush


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