God Loved Me Like I Was
Hi, On May 3, 2003 I attended a two week counseling course conducted by Dr. Basil Frasure. I learned some things while I was there that have changed my life. He taught me how to discover who I really was in God's eyes. I've searched for this my whole life and at times I got a clear picture but it only lasted for a day or two. Self doubt, fear, anxiety, drugs, selfishness, lust, confusion and lack of trust in God and His word prevented me from clearly seeing myself as God saw me all along.
I was raised in a little country town in Arkansas. I have four brothers and three sisters (I'm the third youngest). My father was a violent alcoholic and put extreme fear in me at a young age. What made things worse was the way he made fun of me. I was shy and awkward and he amplified those feeling by mocking me. I started drinking at age 13 and smoking pot at 16 yrs. of age. This helped me to numb my inferior feelings (I wasn't concerned about long term effects). By the time I was 21, drugs and alcohol were a big part of my life. It sounds bad now but at the time I just wanted to escape into my dream world to avoid the fear and anxiety inside of me.
As I got older I started developing noticeable personality disorders. I went to a psychiatrist and was prescribed medications (xanax / klonopin / different antidepressants). The medications were very similar to the drugs and alcohol that I abused but they were less fun. However, they did manage to numb my emotions and that was better than having to face my problems. They didn't solve my problems though, and I continued to see psychiatrists and psychologists. I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive personality disorder and borderline personality disorder.
My physical symptoms were: restless leg syndrome, bruxism, TMJ, depression, ringing ears, constipation, panic, and severe anxiety. I couldn't sleep at night either and that just aggravated the symptoms even more. On July 20, 2000 at the age of 36, I decided to surrender everything to God. I was going to live just like a perfect Christian. This was a great decision but I expected things to get better immediately. After a few days of success in not doing street drugs, I became overwhelmed with fear, anxiety, self doubt and doubting God. I did drugs off and on for the next couple of years and was sinking into a deeper depression. My thinking actually got delusional and I wasn't even aware of it. I wanted to die and that occupied my thoughts, along with drugs to numb the pain. I became sicker each day. I resented God and every happy successful person it this world! I enjoyed bad news because it made me feel more alive.
I never attempted suicide (I was to afraid that hell was real and I didn't want to burn in hell for eternity), so I made the decision to get help. I learned that I couldn't do it on my own. I started trusting God and listening to Him instead of begging and whining, then saying " See, if you were real, you would help me" I joined a church and vowed to never stop going and to develop christian friendships. I studied the Bible and developed some patience for the first time in my life.
Patience and trusting God that I could be restored led me to Basil Frasure's website. I knew that I had to see him. He taught God's word and I had to speed up my progress with God so I scheduled a two week stay in San Angelo. I believed in my heart that Basil could help me in spite of my circumstances. (I still did drugs sometimes and had a lot of self doubt). He did, he taught me who I was in God's eyes. I am a changed person. Basil was able to drive home some of God's teachings and change my thinking. I learned that I didn't have to get anyone's approval anymore. God loved me like I was. Well, I can't hardly believe it but I am free. I explode with joy and when satan knocks on my door now, I say "Jesus, will you get that for me?"
One last little tidbit of what God did for me when I trusted Him. I smoked a pack of cigarettes a day for twenty years. I knew that smoking was bad for me and I tried to quit four times without success. (the cravings were just too strong) While I was being counseled in San Angelo, I made a commitment to God that I would quit again and live with the withdrawal symptoms. He took away the withdrawal symptoms! The only time they come back is when I forget to trust Him.
Basil is a gifted counselor who is as good of an example as I've ever seen at displaying God's grace. He is able to bring light to God's word in several different ways. He does this through analogies, videos, scripture memorizing etc. His greatest example to me is how graceful he is. If you are very serious about changing your life and are committed to doing things God's way only, Basil can help you.
If you would like, you can
contact me with questions
or comments through my e-mail address:
I pray that all of your needs are met as you learn to trust God with EVERYTHING.
A YEAR LATER: (June 2004)
I continue to feel the peace of God in my life and I continue to have less and less fear. My emotions are so stable now compared to a year ago. Visiting you was such a blessing for me. Below is a list of blessings that I've received since visiting you a year ago.
1. I quit smoking.Wow, I didn't realize how much my life has changed in just one year. Thank you so much for helping me see myself as I really am through God's eyes. I'd be glad to share this with others who visit your website if you want to. It could be a follow up to my testimony from a year ago.
2. I stopped using drugs.
3. I've been off medications for nine months now.
4. My sleep is fully restored.
5. My heart has peace and joy now instead of fear.
6. I'm teaching a weightlifting class at the boys and girls club.
7. I'm a full time student in college with all A's (so far).
8. I'm working at UALR in the Health Science Dept.
9. I am happily married.
10. My outlook on life has changed from pessimistic to optimistic.
11. Marilyn (my wife) and I are very close to buying a house.
12. I obey God out of love and respect instead of guilt and obligation.
13. My self-doubt is changing to confidence in God.
14. I have hope for my future.
15. I feel like a leader instead of a loser.
As I was praying this morning I started thinking about all of the things God has done for Marilyn and I in the past twelve months, then I started thinking about what he has done for ME in the past ten years. As I began writing things down to reflect on how good God has been to me, I felt like it would bless you to be reminded about how my trip to visit you in San Angelo has changed my life. If you recall, I first came to see you for counseling in late May 2003. At that time I was a struggling Christian w/ very little hope or confidence. I had been seeking the Lord for approximately three years but was not experiencing any of the good things mentioned in the bible. At the time I met you I had already accepted Jesus as my Lord and trusted that I was going to heaven, but at the age of 39 I still had a lot of living to do. I was so discouraged, bitter, depressed, anxious, fearful, etc. that life was a dreadful burden and I didn’t know how I was going to bear the pain until I made it to heaven. I was taking anti-anxiety and anti-depressant medications, failing in my efforts to stay free from drugs or alcohol, failing to maintain a job for over two weeks at a time, and struggling in my relationships with others. I was unable to escape this vicious cycle no matter how hard I tried...
It was during this time that I received the revelation that it was not too late for me to have all of the good things God’s Word promised me, but I would need help from someone that could teach me how to overcome my problems. My ability to resist the tricks of satan was so limited that I needed a “Helper” to assist me in battling my way out of the seemingly impossible hole I dug for myself by not seeking God with my whole heart previously. I determined in my mind that I was going to find that person, which is what led me to your website. As I read your articles I could discern that you were truly a man of God and I felt comfortable traveling ten hours to visit you for two weeks in hopes of changing my life.
Well, as you know, that’s when everything started changing for the better. You helped me see myself as God saw me, which enabled me to gain a secure identity and begin to win some of the battles I was facing. As the months and years passed I grew stronger in the Word and more hopeful for my future. Over time my confidence skyrocketed and I began to believe that I truly could “do all things through Christ”. I started experiencing peace and joy in my life for the first time in over a decade. I restored my relationship with my former girlfriend and we have now been married for almost ten years. We have peace and harmony in our home and a deep respect for each other, “submitting ourselves to one another in love”. We have a beautiful five year old son and a nice brick home in a wonderful neighborhood. I completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences and a Master’s Degree in Rehab Counseling and have now worked for the VA as a rehab counselor for over five years. My job is to help Veterans overcome the service-connected disabilities they incurred while protecting our country from evil. In October 2010 I accepted my calling as a Minister and I now preach in my own church and to other congregations as well on a regular basis. I used to be so fearful of speaking in front of others but over time the fear has completely disappeared and I look forward to sharing God’s Word when asked to do so. (This could be the biggest miracle of all in my life because timidity/shyness was something I struggled with all of my life.)
I could list so many more things that God has done in my life since visiting you ten years ago and can say without any doubts that those two weeks I spent with you is what initiated these changes. I am so grateful that you were obedient to God and were where I needed you to be when I was ready to try my hardest to seek and know God. I know it must bless you deeply to impact the lives of others the way you have done. Again, thank you so, so much for teaching me about God so I could experience my “expected end” and have peace, hope, confidence and purpose for the rest of my life.
Your brethren in Christ,