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My Success Was Killing Me

Jonathan Weaver's Story

I was tired of living.

"If I watch church online before I kill myself," I thought as I watched NewSpring live, "maybe God will have mercy on me."

The service was about Jesus's exposing people’s sin and setting them free. I attended NewSpring Charleston on a fairly regular basis after my brother and sister-in-law invited me. But it was the first time I’d heard about a pastor's depression, control issues and addiction to pornography.

I realized I wasn’t too damaged for Jesus to love me.

When I worked overseas, my life was focused on my own pleasure. I brought home $12,000 a month after taxes. I was single and owned cars, boats, and a nice house. Other guys were jealous of the life they thought I had.

I chased happiness in my money, prostitutes, drugs, alcohol, and porn.

Numb to life

But I wasn’t happy. I suffered from anger, depression, control issues, and a fear of being alone.

Then I lost my job and had to move back to the states. After several months of being unable to afford the pleasures that temporarily numbed my pain, I became even more depressed.

Then one Sunday, I decided to watch NewSpring online. The pastor didn’t just pray a prayer to get over his issues. He admitted his sins to a godly man.

You Can’t Say That in Church

Right then, I realized I wasn’t too damaged for Jesus to love me. I drove to the Charleston campus as fast as I could to find the campus pastor. I started crying and telling him where I was in life and all the things I’d done. He talked to me and prayed and let me just confess.

I’d never gone to a church where I could tell someone, “Hey, I drink, do drugs, fight depression, and have used prostitutes,” and not feel like I was being judged.

It was a huge weight off my shoulders. But something still didn’t feel right.

Breathing at least

I continued attending and eventually decided to join. During the ownership class, the pastor asked us on a scale of one to 10 how certain we were that we’d go to heaven when we die.

I didn’t feel certain. And then I realized that despite confessing my sins, I’d never surrendered my life to Jesus.

I was tired of trying to numb my depression with things that never satisfied. I wanted a relationship with Jesus. 

I talked about it with my host, and he prayed with me to ask Jesus to come into my life. For the first time, I felt like I could breathe.

My provider

It’s been a process, and I still have moments of sadness, but I no longer suffer from depression or struggle with my addictions, anger, or control issues. I don’t chase money anymore. 

I have a new job that pays me $12 an hour, and I am happy because Jesus provides for all of my needs.

My favorite day of the week is Sunday because I get to see Jesus change people’s lives the way He’s changed mine.

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