The truth revealed
It was a hot, summer Saturday in July of 1968. Just out of the U.S. Navy, I was sitting in a large overstuffed chair in the living room of my father’s house leafing through the latest issue of Life magazine. I noticed an ad offering a free publication about the meaning of life and where the events of that time were heading—the name of that publication was The Plain Truth. Also to be included, if I took the “hook,” would a free booklet titled Hippies, Hypocrisy, and Happiness. I was always one to request anything free. The Plain Truth offer was for a three-month trial subscription, and I assumed that I would get a bill after the time was up, but I would then simply cancel.
It was soon evident that I was learning things that I had never heard of before—and with plain scriptural proofs to back them up. I remember being astounded by what I was learning and how clear the Bible became—and how much I started looking forward to studying it on a regular basis. I looked forward to the daily mail delivery with great anticipation as that meant I would receive even more literature I had requested, and I soon started receiving monthly coworker letters.
Looking back now, I realize that God had begun a process in me; I was being called. Yes, I had been one of those chosen and specially called to understand the mind-altering truths I was learning, and to be a true follower of Jesus Christ!
Previous to God calling me, I had not comprehended a single one of the truths of the Bible—in spite of the fact that I had attended the Disciples of Christ, Christian Church and Sunday School with my parents as a youth, and was supposedly baptized at age 14. But, now, these awesome truths were being inculcated into my understanding, and part of what I learned was that with the knowledge of these truths comes a responsibility—that God holds people accountable for what they understand. I found that evident in James 4:17 and Hebrews 10:26.
So, I started to espouse what I was reading. I believed it when I read: “If ye continue in My word, then are ye My disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make ye free” (John 8:31-32, King James Version). As I studied further I learned more and more about what that meant.
I knew there was no turning back! I remember saying to myself in those waning days of my carnality—“The life I have lived to this point has been a joke—everything I have ever attempted to do I have either done it in a slipshod manner to just get by or I gave up completely.” I was determined to change that—I knew I had to overcome those weaknesses that had previously defined my life.
Deja vu—It was a hot summer Sabbath day in July—a Saturday—the year was 1972. Just out of a four-year period of studying, learning and being humbled, I was sitting in an auditorium seat at a local high school leafing through my Bible as I intently listened to my first sermon about the meaning of life and where the events of that time were heading. I was now sitting in my true Father’s house. I was baptized the following Sabbath.
The teaching church
I came to know about “the truth” through nothing short of a miracle. I was a widow and had met Bob, a wonderful man who had been in the Church for over 30 years. I began to share with him how I was struggling with my previous husband’s death. I had mentioned my concerns, and he asked me if I wanted to read a booklet about death. I read the booklet and was totally put at ease regarding a lot of questions I had regarding death in general. Everything in the booklet made perfect sense. It had answered my questions in a way I had never thought of. After three years I can say I was beginning to accept my husband’s untimely death with a new understanding.
I began to attend church with Bob. I noticed at the first service how respectful the men in the congregation were toward their wives. Men had their arms around them, some holding hands, and some shared hugs. I also took note of how the minister opened the Bible and asked everyone to go to the scriptures. I called it “The Teaching Church.”
Another observation was everyone in the congregation seemed to know each other. How different that was! I was made to feel welcome by several people. That was also a first for me. In over 30 years of attending different churches, all of the above had never occurred.
My husband, Bob, and I were married a year and a half later. After attending my first Feast in 2003 I told him that God was calling me! I felt an urgent need to be baptized; I wanted to be one of God’s firstfruits. I was baptized on Sept. 7, 2004.
As Bob and I are now entering our 20th year of marriage in 2022, we both stand firm in our faith that God is building teams to rule with Him in the Kingdom.
I have searched my entire adult life for my purpose on earth. The truth has a beginning, middle and end. What beautiful truths to know why we were born. I know what the good news holds in promise for me, and, God willing, I plan to claim it.