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Thursday, December 01, 2005

the night i met god

It was the Sunday after Thanksgiving in 1985. I was a junior in high school. That school year had started off as a very good year for me. I was one of the top runners on the cross country team, and I finally got my first girlfriend. In early November, both the relationship and the cross country season ended. By Thanksgiving I was feeling about as lonely as I ever had.

That Sunday evening, at the end of the long weekend, while I was reading a book for my English class, I felt a tightness in my chest, and I started having trouble breathing. I felt dizzy. I've had respiratory allergies most of my life, and this was probably related to that condition. If so, it was by far the worst attack I've ever had.

I don't remember the next few minutes. I had been sitting in a chair on one side of my bedroom, but the next thing I remember I was lying in my bed on the other side of the room, slowly getting my breath back. I remember thinking, my life is worthless, and I whispered a prayer, "God, if you can hear me, just let me die."

What happened instead was that I slowly became aware that someone else was in my room. I couldn't see anyone, but I could sense a presence. The intensity of the presence began to grow, until it was so overwhelming that I was aware of nothing else, not even myself. I knew I was in the presence of God. I don't think the English language even contains the words to describe the sensation.

My life has never been the same since. Things didn't turn around immediately, but I started on a journey that has led me places I never would have imagined.

Tonight is the 20th anniversary of that experience, and the memory is still as fresh in my mind as if it happened yesterday.


At 12/01/2005 2:04 PM, Anonymous Barry Dundas said...

Great story of the amazing grace of God. I find that my most intense experiences with the presence of God are hard to express in words. Sometimes it is just easier to say, "I guess you had to be there." However if you have been there, the story is even more powerful. It takes great courage to share your story in a public setting, and I for one am grateful.


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