My name is Katie Martin and I am 39 years old. I have lived all my life in Dundalk, Co. Louth. I never knew much about life nor did I ever question why we were even here, but I always believed that there was a God and that, no matter what life brought your way, I always knew that it was God’s will.
The only thing is I never knew God then, as I know Him today. I would like to share some things about myself and about how I got to know this God that I am now talking about.
I was married young and, at the age of 21, I had three girls, all under the age of five. Then at the age of 23 I had a horrific experience, that would change the course of my life forever. My wee girls died at our home in a house fire in May ’87. To put on paper how one might feel after such an experience as this; all I can say is that it is a handicap no one can see, only God. To go into detail and tell you how I got through is to say I only existed. Trying to cope with life from then on was never easy. My marriage broke up in ’95. Even though we had another family, two boys and a girl, myself and Paul just drifted far apart that we were now beyond any help. This was the one thing I could not fix. I myself took the full blame for the break-up. Myself and Paul had been through so much together, I did not want the marriage to end. I had believed that God had given me a second chance at life and had blessed us with another family. To me it seemed I had let God down.
Through this my life became unbearable and I was giving up the will to live. I had come to a stage in my life that I could not go on and there was no way back. I literally turned myself over to God one day and asked Him, “If you really are there, will You help me and put me on the right road?” My cry was so very real and I meant everything I said. That same day I said to myself, “I will go and see my uncle Dalton.”, who once had a troubled life but now was doing fine. This was my thoughts and this is what I had planned. In the meantime my phone rang and it was my uncle, asking me if I wanted to go to a prayer meeting in his house. You see, he had been a born again Christian and he said he had been praying for the family and that I was the one God had put on his heart. I then realised that what I had said to God that day HE really did hear me and HE was now showing me the right road. I was overwhelmed by all this, so I went to the meetings, which took place in the Baptist Church. I have to say, to my shame, I did not know that Christ died for me. I was now hearing the gospel for the first time in my life. I was saddened to think that all my life I thought that if you lived a good life and that you were a good enough person you would go to heaven. I have since learned that is not true. You see, I knew I had let God down and that is why I could not fix anything any more. I needed God’s forgiveness in my life and the only way to have that was to accept what His SON had done on the cross; that Christ was my Saviour, if only I would let Him.
I was going to the Baptist Church about three weeks now, and when I would hear the pastor preach God’s Word, it was like God Himself was just speaking to me about how much He loved me, even though I knew the sinner that I was. This is how God revealed Himself to me; John 3, verse 16: For God so loved the world that HE gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
God paid dearly with the life of His Son. The highest price He could pay. Jesus accepted our punishment, paid the price for our sins, and then offered us the new life that He had bought for us. To believe is more than intellectual agreement that Jesus is God. It means to put our trust and confidence in Him, that He alone can save us. It is to put Christ in charge of our present plans and eternal destiny. This was the one thing I knew I had never done. Nobody was in charge of my life, only myself. I knew it was time for me to let go and let God. I went that day and I spoke with my pastor, Stephen Murphy. I told him how my life was. He took me through the sinner’s prayer by asking me if I believed I was a sinner. I said, “Yes.” He then said, “Do you believe Jesus died on the cross for you?” I said, “Yes.” Then he said to me, “In your own words, tell God you are sorry and ask Him to forgive you and ask Him to come into your life. And as you say this, then believe in your heart that He has heard you in Jesus’ name.” Well, in my own words I did ask God to forgive me. I also said, “You do God what I can’t do any more.”
I came home that night and the joy in my heart was with me to stay. The only way I can explain to you how I felt, I was full up. I didn’t know quite what was happening to me but whatever tears I had left they were tears of joy. And I wanted to tell everyone of this love I had found in Jesus, who now was my Lord and Saviour.
Since that day I have never looked back. I have fallen many times and have let people down, but God will never let you down. He is always by your side, ready to forgive you, again and again. For His mercies are new every morning. For He is faithful and just to forgive you of all your sins and to cleanse you from all unrighteousness.
This is the God that I have come to know. I love Him and this is the reason I live, because He holds my future. And my life is worth living now because I know He lives in me. My marriage is fully healed and, in ’99, we had another baby, a wee boy. His name is Jack. I am a born again Christian seven years now and I go to Bible study twice a week in the church. I can’t express in words what joy it is to my soul to be able to understand God’s Word and to apply it to my life. Everything that I have read in the Bible has changed the person I once was. I give thanks to God every day and I thank Him for answered prayers.
If ever you think you’re on your own, remember God is only waiting to help you.
What He done for me He also wants to do for you.
Just believe in the work of the cross.
No one can see the kingdom
Of God unless he is born
Again. John 3 verse 3
I am the way, the truth,
and the life. No one comes to
the Father except through Me.
John 14 verse 6
If you confess with your
Mouth, Jesus is Lord; and
Believe in your heart that God
Raised Him from the dead, you
Will be saved. For it is with your
Heart that you believe and are
Justified, and it is with your
Mouth that you confess and are
Saved, as the Scripture says,
Anyone who trusts in Him will never be put to shame.
Romans 10 verses 9 to 11