A Journey To Happiness
“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
It was around 1970 when I felt a strong desire to go in search of happiness. I had heard about Christ, and I was told that if I wanted to find love, harmony and peace, I must have Christ. But in my mind Christ was simply a longhaired man who belonged to the Beatle generation. My erroneous ideas were to some extent the product of wrong home influences. I grew up in a large family which was disintegrating more and more, until my parents finally separated. After that had happened, I became acquainted with different groups, among whom I thought I could find what I was searching for. I started with the Feminist Movement, with which I got involved in political activities, but I found no inward peace.
During those restless day I was very much concerned about my education, and as a student I felt that I had to take steps forward. But unfortunately, I went in the wrong direction.
Together with part of my family, I got in touch with a cult whose leader claimed that he was Jesus. We knew that his claims could not be firmly founded; nevertheless, for some reason, we all felt attracted to him and to his system, though we could not explain why. In spite of this attraction, an internal voice told me not to look the leader in the eyes and not to have a lengthy conversation alone with him. At that time I did not know that cult leaders use hypnotism to control their adherents; now I understand that, God through the Holy Spirit, wanted to protect me from a great danger.
After having spent some time with this religious group, I found out that my family had decided to keep away from them. Then an idea hit me like a rock. “My family who knows these people, will have nothing more to do with them. Maybe my family is right. Are these people traveling the narrow road that leads to eternal life? Their fruits seem to testify against their claims. After all, I want to be saved, if possible together with my family, and this is possible only in connection with the truth. “Where is the truth?” I called the group on the phone and told them that I had made up my mind to cut off all my connections with them.
From then on things went very bad for me. I was restless all the time and, worse than that, I felt as if insanity was about to seize me.
I was struggling hard with myself when I began to work at a home for boys with behavioral problems. With that difficult job I had a very hard time. Weakened through sleepless nights and through the use of coffee and cigarettes, I soon had a nervous breakdown.
While I was severely tormented by fantasies, I felt that something I could not conquer was constantly trying to pull me down. I tried different means to alleviate my suffering, but nothing helped. Finally I ran away and I don’t know how I ended up in a mental institution. The devil had been actually trying to devour me ever since I turned my back on the cult with which I had been connected. I was pulled away from him, step by step, by the powerful hand of our Saviour, yet not without much prayer and personal struggle. Those who think they can become associated with a cult and then back out easily, whenever they like, are only fooling themselves. The devil will not give them up easily.
During my struggle between life and death, I received much help from two encouraging statements.
“When you feel as if things can’t go any further, a little more light will come from somewhere.”
“He who seeks will find.”
Today I thank the Lord Because I have found Him who is the way, the truth, and the life. He has delivered me from the power of darkness and has caused the glorious light of the gospel of Christ to shine upon my path. My journey for happiness actually started when I came to the knowledge of the truth. I also thank the Lord because He had given me a good, Christian husband and two lovely children.
I cannot explain why a person who is searching for the truth is often permitted to err along strange paths before he can find the right way. Others have gone through practically the same experience as I have. Maybe some people have to get into trouble and “burn their fingers” before they can take a stand for the truth. Then they will not become curious and venture on forbidden ground afterwards.
In conclusion, I say to those who may be reading this article.
Be of good courage in the Lord. Do not be afraid. Trust in Him also when everything seems to be falling apart. He knows what you need and, if you call on Him with a repentant heart. Relying upon His promises, He will not let you down.