“It was a beautiful Friday morning on the 26th of January 2001, nineteen years ago.
My home nation of India was gearing up to celebrate her 52nd Republic Day.
This was the day when the Constitution came into effect in 1950 and India turned into a newly formed republic.”
And it was also the same day that India was hit with her worst ever earthquake in the state of Gujarat.
Close to 7 on the Richter Scale, it caused unprecedented damages.
Little did I know, that on this day, I was about to undertake a journey, which would radically change my life forever.
And little did I know, there was a mighty earthquake coming into my life too.
A shaking that would totally and completely break me down, strip me of everything, and bring me down to my knees.
Being a keen motorcyclist, I was for the first time, about to take on a solo ride, across the entire sub-continent of India.
The relative sponsors were in place and the route was planned, as I got ceremoniously flagged off from the south eastern coastal city of Chennai.
I was to cut across to the western coast, and then head right up to the northern mountains of Leh and Ladhak.
I would then head southbound straight down a middle highway, before getting back to my starting point and base in Chennai.
Everything was going along pretty smoothly, till I reached about half way point down on my return journey.
Taking a hard and sharp left, on a hot, sunny and dry hilly wilderness, at 100 Kmph……..
……my rear tyre blew, resulting instantly in a crash that should have rightfully sent me into a lost oblivion forever.
But God was merciful.
I survived with just a broken left shoulder!
How It All Began
Everything has a beginning, and for me this phase in my life began after I barely crossed my teenage years.
Brought up in a reasonable well-to-do family, with a decent education, I really lacked nothing in life.
I was spiritually raised in a mainline denominational Church, with all the ritualism of baptism and confirmation.
And honestly? life was moving along pretty well for me, until I left home at the age of 21.
I headed to the land of UK to a start a life for myself.
Little did I know, that it was not just home I was leaving.
But I was forsaking God too, what little I knew of HIM, forsaking my so-called spiritual upbringing.
And that dormant, untapped desire to live out, taste and experience every ungodly temptation, was all set to come alive.
Every ungodly opportunity that the world had to offer, would be an open door into its web.
And I would take it!
This carried on, gradually increasing more and more with time, over the next 22 years.
I had lost the plot, as they say, and steeped deeper and deeper in to a life of sin of every kind.
My conscience ‘seared as with a hot iron’, I had reached a ‘point of no return’.
I was in total bondage in the hands and the web of the devil, doing his bidding at his will.
And there was no getting out of this, though I sought it with tears.
I was a helpless slave to sin!
A Dream Shattered
There is little, that can be more discouraging than a shattered dream.
What started as ‘self-glory’, ended in the pits. I had lost face.
So there I was in the middle of this state highway, in the midst of the wilderness, stranded for about five hours.
There was much to ponder about, much to reflect on, even though I suffered a broken shoulder and a broken spirit.
In the mean time, while all this was happening, the other side of my life was simultaneously coming to light.
My sins had found me out! [Numbers 32:23].
I lost everything I had built and worked for.
It was all taken away from me.
I HAD LOST EVERYTHING THAT WAS DEAR TO ME! Including my precious family.
And there was absolutely nothing that I could do about it.
GOD HAD HAD ENOUGH! My moment of chastening and scourging had arrived.
Pride Set In
While trying to physically heal over the next couple of weeks, pride set in.
I decided to finish my personal ‘glory journey’, even though it meant kicking against the goads.
Strapping up my broken shoulder, painful as it was, I set out to finish my journey on my motorbike.
Thankfully, because of the sponsors, my motorcycle by this time, had been well repaired and perfectly functioning.
The Gospel Preached To Me
Undertaking this next phase of my journey, little did I know there was the Gospel waiting to be preached to me.
God, by His Sovereign and Amazing Grace, had prepared someone to do just that.
I rolled into the city of Hyderabad to break journey for a couple of days.
I headed straight to meet a godly aunt of mine, whom I hadn’t seen in twenty-five years.
With a prayerful burden in her heart, she gave me the Good News, the true ‘Gospel of my Salvation’.
It came with a wonderful Promise, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame” [Romans 10:11]
I was hearing this wonderful Word of Truth for the first time in my life, intently taking in ‘every word’.
And the fact that HE rose from the grave for my ‘personal justification’, just as though I had ‘never sinned’ [Romans 4:25].
I believed with all my heart, my life was a mess and I knew it.
And this wonderful Gospel message, didn’t just sound right, it felt so right and true.
I knew instantly it was an infallible truth, one I ‘MUST’ embrace at all costs, and I just could not let it go.
Not just for that moment, but for the rest of my life.
This was it, I found that which I never even remotely sought for.
It was God’s Amazing Grace that it came by me.
The brokenness that took place in my life had to happen, that I could receive God’s true Grace.
Often it takes that, for our hearts to open, that we may truly receive the Grace of God.
A Tearful Night
I was a long tearful night that night, one of joy, relief and sorrow.
But then, a heart filled with thanksgiving and a wonderful ‘blessed assurance’.
And with this ‘blessed assurance’, I set out early the next morning, in a bid to finish my journey.
It wasn’t long though, before my worldly sorrows and my predicament, started to viciously overwhelm me again.
When I reflect back, I realize it was the enemy at work, trying to steal that which Heaven gifted me.
Riding in the midst of another hot and dry wilderness, on National Highway 9, I started to shake and lose control.
That’s it! I threw in the towel, but then something happened!
Another maximum sixty seconds and I reckon I would have been gone.
THEN SUDDENLY! From out of nowhere, Heaven Came Down And Glory Filled My Soul.
I could seemingly feel it, being washed down from head to toe, from my shoulders and out through my fingertips.
In a moment of time, all my cares had gone, and my burdens lifted.
I WAS FREE INDEED!
Although I did not understand it then, yet I knew what was happening to me.
I was still riding, while all this was taking place.
I finally pulled up to the side, and without knowing it, I looked up to Heaven, and said, “YES”.
My worldly burdens were replaced with a Heavenly one.
I knew, in a moment of time, that I just had to preach ‘The Gospel of God’s Grace’.
That was to be my mandate for the rest of my life.
Turning Into The Home Stretch
As I turn into the home stretch of the final lap of my life, I look back with thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving to God Almighty, Who saved me with a Mighty Hand and an outstretched Arm.
It’s been quite a journey so far as I cross the 63rd milestone with a sign-post saying, “KEEP GOING”!
In spite of all the hills and valleys, I cannot forsake, what Christ has done for me.
I couldn’t, even if I tried!
Not for anybody or anything! For this blessed hope and assurance is overwhelming and infallible.
Christ Jesus truly is “a Friend Who sticketh closer than a brother” [Proverbs 18:24].
So now I keep looking unto Christ Jesus, Who is the, “Author and Finisher of my faith” [Hebrews 12:2],
“I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do”, as the great Apostle Paul says.
“Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before……
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” [Philippians 3:13-14].
A Nut Shell Account
This has been a brief account of my life in a nut shell.
And honestly? This is not even really about me, but rather a testimony to God’s Amazing Grace.
If your life has been one of hell, or you feel down and out, in a state of utter hopelessness……
I pray this will encourage you.
All is certainly never lost by any means, as long as you have breath in you.
God, through the Person of His Son Jesus Christ, has Personally paid every sin debt of yours.
And He paid it by fully shedding every ounce of His Divine and sinless Blood.
He died for all our sins on that Calvary cross just outside the city gates of Jerusalem in 29 A.D.
And that includes past, present and future.
You may think, “what do I have do with someone who died over two thousand years ago?
Well, the answer to that is……”EVERYTHING! Our eternal destiny hinges on this one ‘Act of God’ alone.
Then He was buried, and historically rose again after three days, validating that it was a truly ‘finished work’.
That’s the Gospel of our salvation.
And all it takes is a ‘believing heart’, with no religious or any other strings attached.
If you’re reading this, I pray you will not leave this planet with knowing Christ Jesus, through believing His Gospel.