My name is Steven. Below I provide my testimony of how God brought me to faith in Jesus Christ and His Gospel.
My Credentials to Show I Am a Trustworthy Witness
My name is Steven Yeadon, and I am a graduate from the University of Central Florida holding a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. I am also an independent military analyst and scholar in the field of military operations. I am published 8 times in peer reviewed journals. For brevity, I provide links to a couple of my works published by the US Military below.
This article is called, “The Problems Facing United States Marine Corps Amphibious Assaults.” It is in the Journal of Advanced Military Studies on pages 141-173. https://www.usmcu.edu/Portals/218/JAMS_Fall2020_11_2_web2.pdf
This article is called, “A New Combined Arms Approach for the Armored Brigade Combat Team.” It is in the Army journal Armor on pages 14-21. https://www.benning.army.mil/Armor/eARMOR/content/issues/2020/Summer/ARMOR_Summer_2020_edition.pdf
My story is of someone raised in a nominal Christian home, who never truly understands the Gospel until college. That Jesus Christ died for my sins and those of the world to rise on the third day resurrected from death. That if I or anyone believes on Him and what He did on the Cross for our sins, we will have eternal life.
Early in my adult life, I asked for and received miracles when I asked God in two very dark prayers. Prayers that revealed the darkness in my heart. While God is in control and all His actions are sinless, my two answered prayers exposed the depth of my sin. I knew I was a monster at heart, and needed to be saved from my sins.
However, my so called faith in Jesus Christ was very shallow, while being warped and twisted by my sins. The truth is I never had faith that touched my heart, which in the bible is the seat of the will. To be wholehearted is to be whole-willed. Sure I felt like I loved Jesus, and I wanted to obey Jesus with my mind, but something deeper, my will, was never in it. I was half-hearted in my faith.
My story is then of a rebel in a descent into further rebellion, unaware of his real eternal fate, eternity in hell. I would eventually find out, amidst much suffering and in the shadow of another great miracle, that my doubts had conquered my faith all along.
This story is both cautionary, so others do not repeat my mistakes, and an object lesson about God’s mercy and power displayed to win a prodigal son from hell. A prodigal son that deserved none of the mercy shown to me, making it grace, unmerited favor.
God Reveals Himself as the God of Nature
In middle school and high school I was a Deist. I believed that a God existed but one that conformed to modern science. I later in college identified as an atheist because I was angry at God. I knew He existed, but as the scriptures say, I would not give Him thanks or honor. I became futile in my speculations as a result and my foolish heart was darkened. I became an American political liberal supporting abortion and so many other evils. Why was I so angry at God? I saw my life as painful due to illnesses that at that time were mostly undiagnosed. I made pain my God, because a Creator who let me and others suffer for what I deemed no good reason did not deserve to be God, to me.
In the summer of 2004, I was engaging my Christian friends on their faith. I was given and read Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, which gave me the idea the Christian faith was reasonable, even sublime. I decided I wanted to get to know this seemingly close knit society of believers guarding an important truth. I started to go to a Baptist church with my dad on Sunday.
Around this time Hurricane Charley was just off the Florida coast, projected to hit Tampa. In an act of pure uncaring pride, I made a prayer I didn’t think would be answered to test God. I asked Him for hurricane Charley to hit Orlando, because I wanted to experience a direct hit from a hurricane. I saw it as a novel, once in a lifetime experience.
Terrifyingly, the hurricane changed course within hours of my prayer, and it passed over Orlando on my birthday of August 14th. I was dumbstruck, and I knew I had met God at last.
Now, I must communicate the fact that I do not think that God answered my narcissistic whim and changed where the hurricane hit because of it. Instead, I believe that God meant me to pray for hurricane Charley to hit my hometown. A direct hit on my hometown that He always intended for hurricane Charley.
In guilt for praying for such a thing and having it happen, my dark heart sought to work off my guilt. I volunteered to help a church evacuate someone from their house that was heavily damaged by hurricane Charley. On the way back home, I wrestled with becoming a Christian, but I could not do it. I needed proof, I thought. For to me, faith was wrong compared to reason, and hope was false if it did not have a rational grounding. I needed evidence, and I would not embrace an ounce of blind faith for any reason, even if it was in Jesus Christ Who loved me and died for me. In a feeling beyond horror, on the way home, I asked God for two more hurricanes to hit Orlando that hurricane season. If that happened I knew to be a Christian. My prayer was answered when Hurricanes Frances and Jeanne smashing into Central Florida that hurricane season.
However, I did not have faith in Jesus Christ. I was following the evidence instead. This would prove my downfall. I did start reading the bible in earnest in this time period. Yet, I could not understand it clearly. I read what I wanted into the bible all the time.
Having been given something no other person in history can claim to have had. God sending three hurricanes to hit a city due to prayer. I then immediately go astray. I wrestle with whether it is the Christian religion or some other religion that is true. After studying the world religions, I determined that only the Christian or Jewish depiction of God allowed for a personal Being willing to answer prayers that controlled the weather. I rejected Judaism out of hand, since I found God in the Old Testament to be a terrible person without the New Testament teachings. I was Modern and Western with my thinking. I did not see the LORD and His Law as what they are: good, righteous, and holy (Romans 7:12). I in the end created two ideas of God in my head, one a New Testament loving God and the other a wrathful and terrible, and to me barbaric, Old Testament God. Shortly after this decision that the Christian God gave me three hurricanes, I get baptized a Christian without having any real faith or knowing Who God really is.
My Life as a False Christian
After this I go to a Southern Baptist church as a Moderate Baptist who believed women should be pastors. I believed that modern sensibilities must override a few bible verses. I also become a Charismatic Christian, lured into reading Charismatic books about miracles, exorcisms, healings, and prophecy. It seemed so exciting! I soon spend time reading these books over my bible. I would even search for prophecies and attempt to hear from God. I began to think of myself as a prophet once I start to have “visions and dreams.” I would even occasionally deliver “powerful prophecies.”
That said, for two years I would grow more and more ill. I graduate college in Spring 2007. Soon after I become terribly ill and go through some of the most tormenting experiences of my life. I would spend two years in hell. I would suffer unspeakable pain beyond description every single day for a year. This was before the normal and quite unexpected sufferings life brings, some of which I experienced on top of my agony. I would get a little better in 2009, but I was still in episodes of tormenting pain almost every day. In this period of time, I really question my faith, and I have many periods of intense doubt. Where it seems my faith is but a shadow. I did occasionally pray a simple prayer in fear I wasn’t a Christian. I asked God to convict me and give me a hellish life if I was not a Christian, so as to be knocked out of complacency and be saved.
Despite my suffering, due to answered prayer, I was determined to work and become great from my work. I spend a year at a private and expensive music college, since I wanted to be a professional singer. However, I was no virtuoso and I was counseled that music degrees made you a starving artist unless you are a top singer or have a niche. I would leave and decide to go to seminary feeling “called” by God to be a theologian. I spent three years studying to be a pastor, teacher, and theologian at a liberal Christian seminary. I stop going to a Baptist church and get involved in the Charismatic End Times cult called the International House of Prayer Kansas City (IHOPKC). I start going to church at an affiliate of IHOPKC in Orlando. I was truly Lost.
The God of History Calls a False Prophet and False Teacher to Repentance and Salvation
However, in the summer of 2013, God literally speaks to me to warn me. While trying to hear the voice of God, I suddenly start to talk against my will as if someone was controlling my words. This involuntary speech tells me that I would read about his Rose. He told me I would be wrestling with “how did she do it,” in the future. He said that should he not avenge himself for one like Rose? The voice then went on to argue that I lacked salvation. I was against suffering in faith, proving I had none. My gut reaction was to argue that since I had faith in Jesus Christ, I deserved heaven. I told the voice it was the devil himself. In scoffing pride, I asked for proof that this voice was God and it gave me a number of predictions of the future that all came true.
Four examples were that I would have almost exactly three years of terrible illness again. This came true. A second was that a terrorist founded caliphate in the Middle East would arise in Syria and Iraq by a terrorist organization called ISIS. This came true a few months later. A third prediction, that I did not remember until it happened a few months after my salvation, was that Donald Trump would be elected president in 2016. A fourth, that I just didn’t remember until it all came back to me in January 2020 was that a disease called Coronavirus would happen, that would wreak havoc on the economy. I remembered this one the second I heard the news about the Coronavirus in China. At the time, in 2013, I distrusted the predictions. I even laughed at them. I was not convinced, since it all sounded far fetched.
Yet, God confirmed by the world swirling all around me that it was He that talked to me. A false prophet finally met God to find out the grim truth: I was going to hell if I did not trust in Jesus Christ as my savior and repent. Shortly thereafter, as a result of a change to my treatment, I became very sick again and would stay that way until June 2016. I spent 3 years in agony. During a period of recovery three years later, I bought a used copy of the book Jesus Freaks at a Good Will, and I was convicted by the stories of martyrs for Jesus, including a young woman named Rose Allin Mount. I was shocked to read about her. I especially struggled with how she was willing to be tortured and brutally murdered with such meekness. When I read about Rose three years later and realized it was her, I was prompted to terror. I must suffer and even die for my faith if others already have. God is impartial and will be my Judge. If Rose will be avenged, I must never do anything that incurs God’s wrath in relation to a woman like Rose, such as be cowardly and lukewarm. When Rose was brave and willing to die for her faith.
At first, I felt convicted to read the bible slowly and carefully to study and apply it. I found it a Herculean task to take the precepts of God’s Word to heart with my actions. However, while reading, I was struck by the reality of the resurrection of the dead and the Day of Judgment while reading 1 Corinthians chapter 15 and Revelation 20:10 through 21:8. I knew that I would face Jesus one day and be Judged by Him.
Saved by Grace through the Gospel of Jesus Christ at Last
I began to feel a tremendous conviction concerning my sins. I became terrified of death, because I intellectually figured I was going to the Lake of Burning Sulfur when I died. I believed this, because I knew that I had lived a life given over to sin that was completely outside God’s will for me. I also realized with shock I had never changed internally after converting to a Moderate Baptist. I was still lost in sin in my heart, I was not becoming more like Jesus Christ over time. After thinking about it, I realized I was feeling terrified of God. If I persisted in doing wrong, I knew my eternal fate at His command. I went on to become terrified of dying. However, I was not willing to admit with 100% certainty that I was going to hell. I could not imagine God doing so to me, because after such a hard life, I thought I deserved heaven.
A whole month of terrified obstinance later, I was on the way home from a family dinner. I felt convicted to stop pretending that I didn’t have doubts about Christianity. I let my doubts finally crash in. I concluded in the presence of such doubt that I could not support believing in Jesus Christ and His Father on evidence of three hurricanes in 2004. Knowing at last what the problem was, I had to admit the truth in me for years, I never had real faith. I had coasted on the evidence given to me. I immediately thought of Romans 10:9 which states “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.“ I already considered Jesus my Lord and God, and I had confessed it openly for years. However, I had done so in vain without doing God’s will. This was something I was already repenting of at this point, but I knew that trying to obey God alone would not save me. I knew my real problem from my days as an atheist.
So, in fear of God and His Day of Judgment, I decided to believe with all my heart, on certainty without sight, that Jesus rose from the dead and that the bible was true. This included the Gospel, that Jesus Christ died for my sins and those of the world to rise on the third day resurrected from death. That if I or anyone believes on Him and what He did on the Cross for our sins, we will have eternal life.
Upon doing so I felt great light inside me. My feelings changed instantly from what felt like great darkness to great light. This happened on June 14th, 2016. Shockingly, the following days showed my internal world to be changed: Many sins I wrestled with hardly bothered me at all anymore, my mind became far more sober, I no longer felt great darkness in me all the time, I wanted to earnestly live a holy life and separate myself from unholy things, I became much better at fighting my temptations, I lost most of the embarrassment I felt when sharing Jesus to others, I found it possible to follow the commands of the Bible that I had found impossible to live up to, and my mental health also improved. I finally accepted the Gospel message on faith, and I would live it out for real this time.
Since then, I have been in periods of great pain, sometimes tormenting, but I suffer for Jesus now. Knowing the devil is my tormentor through illness. It feels Satan has targeted my faith for four years, but thank God! It only gets stronger! I cannot wait for my reward!