The Testimony of Rebecca Roets
“He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.” Psalm 40:2
Hello! My name is Rebecca Roets. I have always known about Christ and the sacrifice He made for me on the cross. My parents were both saved and faithful in church before they were married. I grew up in a church that taught the way of Salvation as God explains it in His Word. That Christ died, was buried, and resurrected on the third day. That going to Heaven required me to repent of my sin, ask God to forgive me, and trust only Him to get me to Heaven. However, just being in a Christian home didn’t save me.
By the time I was 10 I had heard enough Bible preaching to know that I was lost and going to hell. I didn’t want to admit that I was “that” bad. The Holy Spirit was convicting me and I did my best not to listen. As the years passed I found more and more that church was a nuisance and I enjoyed the people and activities less and less. There were three reasons I kept going. First, I was the pastor’s daughter and it would have looked bad if I quit attending. Second, living in my parent’s home meant following their rules and church attendance was one of those rules. My parents were never abusive or even overly strict but they did live by the “I pay the bills. I make the rules.” rule of life. The final reason (and most compelling for me) was that it would really hurt my Mom if I let on how much I now hated church.
Admitting the level of conviction I was under would have meant admitting I was a SINNER to everyone. Instead I pretended everything was fine. I filled my days with reading, crafts and school. I got so good at pretending I was a good girl and ready for eternity that I started to believe the lies myself. Whenever I truly stopped and thought, however, I knew something was missing. Deep down I was thirsting for the living water Christ speaks about in John 4:11-14 and John 7:37-39. Before long I found that losing myself in movies and books deadened my conscience. I could ignore God the Holy Spirit when I was lost in a fictional world. I was already an avid reader but by the age of 16 I spent all my free time reading. I had slowly and surely built a wall of resistance held together by lies that successfully shut out the conviction but also shut out everybody else in my life. I quit letting myself feel so that I wouldn’t have to admit to myself that I was a miserable sinner and discontent with the life I had built myself.
By the time Teen Camp 2000 (age 15) came I had hardened my heart to the point that at home I never felt conviction. At Bible Camp it wasn’t so easy to ignore God. This was a camp focused on listening to and learning about God. At home I could get away from saved people for a while; here I couldn’t. I grew tense; subconsciously fighting God. At this point I had convinced myself that God wasn’t actually speaking to me about salvation. The first or second night of camp the counselor gave a bed time devotion about resisting God. It was almost as if God slapped me on the back of the head and said, “Wake up!” I didn’t quit resisting right away – the flesh never does – but I started noticing that I was
resisting. Later the same week the other lady counselor walked by while I was watching some other teens goof off during free time and casually asked me why, at the age of 15 I had never seriously considered salvation. Her comment, “You’re certainly old enough.” Rings in my head to this day. She didn’t even wait for an answer. She asked the question and then walked off. Those two incidents made me realize that I was doing something I had always told myself I would never do – ignore God’s call to salvation. It was the first time I realized that I was lying to myself.
I really started thinking that August but I still wasn’t willing to give in to God. I didn’t want to give up some parts of my life. I knew that if I got saved Christ would have the right to decide what I would do with my life. What books I read, the movies I watched, my career path, etc. I would need to let God choose all those things. I knew God promised that His choices would always be what was best for me but I wasn’t sure I believed I wanted His best. I had my heart set on a nursing career and I wasn’t willing to take a chance God would have something else for me. I told myself my plan for life was way better than anything God offered me. I had gotten so good at lying I didn’t even notice when I lied to myself.
I turned 16 December of 2000. By the time my sister got saved in April of 2001 I was miserable and bitter. I was mad at God for putting me in a family “stuck” on religion. I didn’t believe that God would make that big a change in my currently “fine” life. Then my sister got saved and the changes in her were so HUGE. All the bitterness, anger,fear and resentment that I associated with her disappeared. In their place was joy and peace that I didn’t have. I really wanted that joy and peace for my own life. I wanted to quit pretending I was happy and actually be happy. I wanted my brother to look at me as if I’d handed him the moon and my parents like they had received a present more valuable than gold and gems. My flesh wasn’t so ready to give in. I watched for two weeks waiting for my sister to go back to the way she was before salvation. I decided I didn’t want to admit to everyone that I had been wrong. I was willing to go to hell for my PRIDE.
Praise the Lord He didn’t give up on me. He kept knocking on my heart and my Dad kept praying and asking me pointed questions about salvation’s application to me. Sunday afternoon, April 29th, 2001 my Dad felt impressed by the Lord to push me into a corner. He asked me a question that brought all my carefully buried anger and resentment to the surface. He asked when I was going to get saved. I couldn’t storm out of the room in a fit because that level of rebellion would guarantee a very embarrassing punishment. I sat there being angry at God and Dad for not just leaving me alone until I finally framed a question I thought was polite enough to avoid a spanking and ended up having an actual spiritual discussion that I had been avoiding for six years. About halfway through our talk I asked my Dad, “If I decide to wait, will God keep speaking to me?” I knew the Bible says that we can resist the Holy Spirit to the point He quits speaking to us and I wanted to know if I had pushed God to that limit yet. Dad couldn’t give me an answer. But the Lord answered me. Almost as clear as if He had spoken out loud I remember hearing His response in my heart, “No.” It scared me to realize that if I didn’t take God seriously right then He might never speak to me again. I had this plan – a fictional story- that I would know I was ready to get saved when God made a certain set of circumstances happen. Those circumstances were always in tomorrow, never today.
When God told me, “No” I realized I couldn’t hide from the truth any more. The truth was I was a wicked lost sinner deserving hell. I didn’t have to kill anyone or rob a bank. I was going to Hell because I had not accepted Christ as my Saviour and that is the only door into Heaven. That afternoon I decided the books I read, my career as a nurse, most importantly, my PRIDE wasn’t worth going to Hell. I realized that I couldn’t FEEL my way into Heaven. I quit looking for a feeling and just trusted Christ. I asked Him to forgive my sin, live in my heart and take control of my life. On April 29, 2001 Jesus Christ saved me and gave me a home in Heaven.
I have never regretted giving my life to Christ. Since that day the Holy Spirit has filled my life with a peace and joy that is indescribable and unfathomable. I no longer have to look to THINGS or people for temporary happiness. I don’t have to hide from the trials and “boring” parts of life in a fictional adrenaline rush. I have a joy that stays even when I am heartbroken and a peace that is still there when fear tries to paralyze me. I still sin; but when I ask my Heavenly Father forgives. I can pillow my head every night without worrying about waking up in Hell. I have a reason to live and a secure eternity in Heaven. With God’s help I will serve Him for the rest of my time on this earth.
Thank you, for taking the time to read my testimony. I hope you see that no matter what lies you tell yourself, “I’m too bad.” or, “I’m not bad enough.” The truth NEVER changes. Christ is waiting right here beside you for you to reach out and accept His gift of eternal life. You’ll never regret accepting.
“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;” Titus 3:5
“Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Acts 20:21
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.” Proverbs 3:5-7
“My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise.” Psalm 57:7