My first encounter with God changed my life forever…
As a child I used to have a real heart for God. When I was five year old, I told my mom: ‘You need to read the Bible more often.’ She often found me on my knees, praying – all alone. When I was nine years old, I had made up my mind: I wanted to tell people about God!
When I grew up however, I became bitter and angry because of very painful things that happened to my family and myself. I started rebelling against God and pushed Him out of my life. I began using drugs and alcohol and got addicted to pornography. Because the world was tough, I decided to become tougher so I started practicing kickboxing and karate.
God however, did not give up on me.
A few years after I turned my back on God, I took an overdose of drugs and ended up in hospital. It was as if all hell broke loose. A horrible experience…
When I was back home, I suddenly had a flash back of the hard drugs, and I was overwhelmed with intense fear. My mother looked at me, and said firmly:
‘David, you need God!’
I knews she was right. That night a pastor came to our home, in the middle of the night, and I kneeled with him, to give my life back to God.
My encounter with God
Some time later I had an incredible experience with God. I was listening to christian music and suddenly I was struck with the tender purity I heard in those voices. At that moment I realized that I had become too tough, too hard. I had built a thick wall around myself, to protect me from the evil world. But this had become a false identity. I was imprisoned in a harnas of false strength.
I kneeled down and asked God to set me free from my hardness and make me pure and tender as a child again. That moment I felt God come over me, with a majesty I cannot describe. His glory and eternal greatness seemed litteraly endless… It was as if I saw the universe itself and God who was even greater.
Then I saw His hands reaching down towards me and He picked me up in His arms.
I came home!
I wept in a way I had never done before and was filled with a love I had never known before. I believe that was the moment I became born again – truly born again from the Spirit of God.
From that day on, I knew that God is real – very real. It became my burning desire to show the world that God is not an illusion, but the most beautiful reality there is.
A few months later, I was reading the Bible and had finished praying, while suddenly I heard the voice of God, really loud. In His voice I heard both great authority, power, joy and peace.
He said: ‘You will be My prophet.’
I was horrified. The only thing I knew about prophets, was what I had heard in sundayschool: prophets were weird, dressed in animal skins and always shouting about coming destruction. No, I did not want to be a prophet, so I pushed it away.
A few years later my pastor shocked me, when he suddenly said: ‘David, I believe you are a true prophet in our church.’ I had no clue! He said this three times. Other leaders began to say the same thing to me…
But… I had a real problem: I stammered – really bad!
It sometimes even happened that I could not speak at all, and when I wanted to buy coffee, I ended up buying milk, because I could not say the word ‘coffee’. This became a painful frustration for me, because I wanted to serve the Lord and tell people about him! One day I tried to give a testimony in church, and afterwards a lady came to my mother, saying: ‘Can you please make sure David never does this again? I could not understand one word he said.’
Later, I met a christian friend, at university, who told me that he also used to stammer really bad. ‘But the Holy Spirit has healed me’ he added excited.
He explained to me that we don’t only need to believe in Jesus Christ and the heavenly Father, but that God wanted to fill me with the Holy Spirit!
I started studying this for several months and prayed intensely about it. My friend had given me the address of a couple who could help me, so I visited them often, while they explained to me from the Bible who the Holy Spirit is and why He is so important for christians. I also read a book by Benny Hinn, who used to stammer as a little boy, and who is a famous healing evangelist now. That fascinated me.
A second encounter with God
After months of studying the Bible and praying, I decided that I wanted to be baptized in the Spirit of God, and allowed the couple to pray for me. When they sarted praying I immediately began to shake all over my body. I found it scary, but trusted my Lord, Jesus Christ. The Bible says that when we ask the Father for the Holy Spirit, He will not give us a demon.
I was however afraid to surrender completely to the Holy Spirit, so I kept controlling myself. Suddenly the lady prophecied over me. The Lord said, through her voice:
‘I have taken you by the hand and I will lead you from victory to victory’, says the Lord of hosts.’
This was a bible verse that I had been reading often that week, plus I had been very fascinated by the name, THE LORD OF HOSTS. Only God knew this! That second I knew without a shadow of a doubt that it was God indeed, and I was safe to let go of all my control and surrender to the Holy Spirit.
The next moment a river of supernatural words flowed out of my mouth. I was praying in tongues! I was overwhelmed with the presence of God, and felt a power rushing through me, that was incredible.
Then I saw the Lord Jesus Christ… He was walking towards me and spoke to me. What He said was an important personal message for me.
My entire body was buzzing and trembling with the wonderful presence of the Holy Spirit.
After this encounter with God I felt an even stronger fire burn inside of me, to share the love of God with people. I became very active in evangelism amongst students and helped lead citywide crusades. Some years later I began to receive invitations to speak in churches, and when I stood there, I trembled with fear, thinking: ‘I can’t speak! I stammer! Lord, help…’
But the moment I had to speak, I felt His presence come over me and His words just flowed out of my mouth like a supernatural river of life, healing, deliverance and love.
The Lord used me in all my weakness. My brokenness was the secret of His power in me. I could not speak, so I was fully dependant on Him.
For the last ten years, my stammer has been gone. Ministering under His wonderful presence has healed the trauma that caused my handicap, and now I can speak fluently. I am however still very dependant on Him, and never prepare a sermon. I surrender and let Him do the talking.
For the last 25 years I have been serving Him with all my heart. I long to see you and many others discover Him as well. He is so beautiful, so precious, so kind and so amazing.
I once was lost in sin and darkness, rebellion and hatred. But He loved me, even before I truly knew Him. He knew my heart, He knew my deepest hidden cry for Him, although I had pushed it away, deep inside. He knew me, before I knew myself and He brought me back to Him.
Now I want to tell you, about His love.
I hope GOD IS REAL will be a tool in the hands of Jesus Christ to bring His rivers of love and goodness in your life and the lives of millions of others. It is my desire that you will also have a personal encounter with God, that will set your heart on fire.
Christian posters show God’s glory
One of the things I do now to help you discover the glory of God, is design christian posters. Before my encounter with God I wanted to use my creative gift to become rich and famous. Now I use my God-given talens to show His love, His beauty and His goodness to people. Because sometimes one image can say more than a thousand words.
I hope you like my christian posters and will use them to remind yourself and others of the overwhelming and burning love of God.
He loves us so passionately, that He became a man to die for us, so we could become His children, who are forgiven and forever loved by Him.