So, it goes like this. I was 13 and although I “believed” in God, I didn’t truly know God. One day, I woke up and said, “I don’t believe in God.”
It was around this time I was getting into metal, more-so the darker stuff. The person I was hanging out with and called a friend didn’t necessarily help. For a time, I wasn’t opposed to entering a church and, in my mind, I didn’t really hate Christ. I just didn’t believe.
Well, then I started looking into the occult. For 14 year old me, the idea of hating your enemies, retaliating when you’re wronged, loving yourself more than anyone else, only caring for those who YOU think deserve it, indulging in whatever you want, believing that good and evil is some kind of “construct”, going by pure instinct (giving more way to the “animal side” of your human self or some hodgepodge) and the ultimate destruction of those who hurt you sounded great!
I came to this odd place where I didn’t believe in the spiritual, but I believed that you could “direct energy” towards something or someone. You could say I was agnostic in that sense. I was open to the possibility of nothing or something greater.
At that point, I was a self-proclaimed Satanist at 15 years old and performed rituals in my garage. Whatever hatred and resentment I had I decided to blame on Christ and his teachings. Even though I said, “I don’t have a problem with Christ. He was just a Jewish rabbi”, the idea of loving your enemies, turning the other cheek and forgiving those who hurt you seemed absolutely terrible to me.
Honestly, I seriously didn’t understand what I was doing. I was absolutely ignorant, and I didn’t think any of it was a big deal. I was blind and ignorant. I never had a bad experience with church or religion growing up. It’s just the fact Satan had a hold on me, and the hurt of the past caused me to see Christ’s teachings as contrary to being strong.
My mother had figured out and tried to discourage me. I lied and said I stopped. I was fully into metal and guitar playing at this point, and the stuff I was listening to was even darker than earlier. We’re talkin’ lyrics that had blasphemy written all over them and in them. The complete inverse of Christ. Everything Christ is, the lyrics were the opposite.
Soon enough, I started experiencing some things. On one occasion, I found blood in my underwear, and I couldn’t explain where it came from. I’d experienced that when I was 9, and thinking back, although I wasn’t practicing magic at 9 years old or doing anything of the sort, there very likely was something there that caused the bleeding.
Twice, I woke up with a bit of diarrhea, another time a dream ended, and I audibly heard the voice of a demon calling my name, I woke up and inhaled severely and not really by choice, and my dog who was about 7 1/2 had to be put down because of kidney failure. Did I blatantly understand what/who was causing these things? Nope! I still didn’t see what I was doing as a big deal. Good thing I wasn’t in control of a nuclear launch site. “Eh, turn the key and push the button. Nothin’ wrong with some bottle rockets!” Sorry. I thought this testimony needed a small bit of humor.
Come April or so of 2016, I remember searching up on YouTube something like, “Satanist metal artist” and I found a CBN video about a man named Kirk Martin who was a metal musician and found Christ. I remember enjoying the excerpt of his old band’s music they played at the beginning, and I re-watched it a few times. As I watched it more and more, I actually found the story more and more interesting.
Come June of 2016, I went overseas to see family for almost a month, and that’s when things started to change. One day I said, “You know, I believe in God”.
Leaving and heading back to the States, I was at Marseille airport and a missionary group, and my dad made small talk.
Then, one guy says to me,
“You know, Jesus wants to have a personal relationship with you.”
I forgot what else he said, but I remember those words. I saw him getting on the plane, and then in Philly, while waiting for the shuttle to take my family and I to where the car was, there that same man was, sitting near me. I noticed him, he gave me a smile and a wink (Note: I’m aware that when winking is mentioned in Scripture, it’s not in a good light. Let me make clear that in the case of the details of my testimony, the man’s wink was noting the coming salvation I was going to receive).
July of 2016, I arrived back to the States not exactly the same person I was when I left. God slowly worked Himself into my life and my home. I still had some of the witchcraft stuff in the house and I tolerated the Satanic music. One day, I decided to put on a Christian metal album, one I hadn’t listened to in a while (Human Sacrifice by Vengeance Rising). I continued to watch the CBN video I mentioned earlier and became more and more open to Christ.
I’d stopped talking to the person I was close friends with because things were beyond toxic, and I was fed up. But, one night, out of anger caused by someone else, I said, “You know what? I’ll give him another shot” and I went ahead and reestablished contact.
Well, towards the end of the conversation, I started to regret my decision, and right after the conversation ended, I went into the bathroom, looked at myself in the mirror and said, “You idiot! Why would you do that!? YOU STINKIN’ MORON!” I went into the TV room, cried, called myself an idiot some more, and out of nowhere, I started blessing the area and said, “In the name of Jesus. In Jesus’ name, in Jesus’ name, in Jesus’ name” over and over and over. Then I fell asleep.
The next morning, as soon as I woke up, at the advice of a different friend I was talking to at the time, I went ahead and wrote the person I’d reestablished contact with a long message, basically telling them I was cutting ties, that Jesus loves them, and I wished them well. I sent the message, blocked them and immediately after, and the Lord told me, “Call your father.”
And indeed, I did.
I started crying and told him I believed. He was happy about the news, considering he was a disciple of Christ and had been praying for me every day. He’d been unaware of my practices, but later, I disclosed to both my parents what I’d been doing. That same day, August 3rd, 2016, I took all of my occult items, threw them away and said something like, “In Jesus’ name, begone from this house.”
Afterwards, I went astray again a bit later and was in a pit for a few years. But that whole road trip is for another time.
In the end, I was so low and in such a terrible place, walking further into destruction, and God SOUGHT me and CHASED after me and PULLED ME OUT! And man let me tell you, I PRAISE HIS HOLY NAME! HALLELUYAH! Thank YOU, MY GOD, FOR DOING SUCH AN INCOMPREHENSIBLY BEAUTIFUL THING.
Even now, almost six and a half years later in January of 2023, I’m still so thankful. Jesus showed me his beauty and had me experience his love. Although I was ignorant of what I was doing, it’s common sense that blasphemy is no joke. But Jesus and His Father came in, and they came after me because they love me.
I’m thankful for those who kept praying and praying and praying for my salvation. Praise The LORD! Thank you Lord God for your Greatness and Majesty. You are to be praised forever and ever! AMEN!
And there it is. From a blasphemer to a believer. From an anti-Christ to a part of Christ.