It began with a book I read entitled “Have You Felt Like Giving Up Lately” that I got from our local public library. I don’t remember the exact details of why that title appealed to me at the time, but it did. The book mentioned another book by the same author, “The Cross and the Switchblade”. The library didn’t have it so I ordered it from Barnes and Noble. I read about lives being dramatically changed and about young people being set free from gangs and drug addiction, all by the power of the Holy Spirt. My first thought was I go into the Catholic Church depressed and I come out depressed. I thought nothing changes for me, but the people I read about experienced incredible changes in their lives. I wondered if the preacher mentioned in the book was still alive, I wanted to hear him preach! I knew nothing about truly Christian churches and preachers at the time, I only knew about the Roman Catholic Church. One day soon thereafter I turned on the radio to a Christian channel. I was not familiar with Christian radio but found the Christian channel quite “by accident”. As I listened to the radio I heard that the preacher I wanted to hear was starting a church in New York City! I wanted to go! By that time my husband had read “The Cross and the Switchblade” also and he was interested in going too, so off we went.
The church was in a theater, and as we walked in and looked around my husband’s first thought was where are all the statues? And when the preacher (not the preacher I wanted to hear, we heard him on another day) came out my husband thought… this guy has a suit on, where are the vestments! One thing that stands out was that it felt good to be there. Our first time in a church other than a Roman Catholic Church and it felt so good! We were in the “coming out of Rome” stage and didn’t know much but we knew this was something good that was happening to us. After the service they had teaching tapes available in the lobby and my husband really wanted to look at those tapes, but by that time I had developed the worst headache I had ever had, to the point that it gave me an upset stomach. Much to our mutual disappointment we had to leave and weren’t able to look at those tapes that day.
During this “coming out of the Roman Catholic Church” period we would go to Mass in the morning 😩 and go to our new found church at night. But that didn’t last too long. As we continued reading our Bibles we became more discerning, and before long we left Rome for good. 🙌 We started going to every service at our new church, Sunday, Tuesday and Friday.
The Sunday services were at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Later a 3 p.m. service was added. We were there all day Sunday, every Sunday. We would get to the city early and have breakfast with other believers before the morning service, and after the morning service we would have lunch. After lunch we would either go out and evangelize or hand out sandwiches to the homeless before returning to the Church for the evening service. The church was open all day, and you could go in and fellowship with other believers, read your Bible, or just sit down and rest. Free parking was provided enabling us to stay there all day. Parking is expensive in New York City so that was a real blessing.
After several years, for various reasons, our time there came to an end. When we attended other churches it was so different. It took a long time to adjust. It was very hard and very sad. Going from all day Sunday to a couple of hours on Sunday was hard.
I was prompted to write this post because last Sunday my husband and were reminiscing about those joyful days of newfound faith in Christ. Finding a solid church to attend these days is difficult. Reminiscing brought such joy to our hearts, but cannot compare with what the future holds for every born again child of God!
1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
Psalm 107:8 Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
The preacher who wrote the two books mentioned in the post was David Wilkerson.
Pastor Dave founded Times Square Church in New York City in 1987. We began attending in 1988, and were both baptized there in May 1989, my husband giving public testimony that day of coming out of the Roman Catholic Church. 🙌
Read about salvation… HERE