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The story of my life

Hi everyone. it seemed the right time for me to tell you part of my life story or testimony if you prefer. This is the story of how God reached my life. We all know that what He asks from us is our faith and to seek His kingdom, but in this case we can say that before i find something, he found me.

As a kid I grew up not missing anything. comparing to most of the other kids I knew, I was quite spoiled. my parents were giving me everything and more. I don't blame them, that was just their way, their thought of how love is. My father split with my mom when i was about 9-10 years old and i lived most of the time with my grandparents. in the same time I was seeing my mom and my dad. everyone was always very protective over me as I was only child. I was doing also well at school. quite well actually. But something in me was missing.

I always felt bored of anything I was doing. Afterwards I eventually discovered what was that. So slowly, but surely I started to change. I was tired of always being the good guy that goes to school, does everything fine and then go back to home. i also wanted to be noticed from the others, to be liked and to draw the attention of the girls. So at the age of 13 I started to get out to parties, disco, bars with my new friends. and as it goes you can't be "let out" of what the others are doing and i stated to smoke my first cigarettes, to drink a bit of beer that later i exchanged for something stronger.
On the age of 14 i was admitted in hospital because i poisoned myself with alcohol. Since then i couldn't drink too much anymore as my body couldn't take it. So i started to smoke marijuana, that i already knew, but since then I just couldn't make a day without it. As I was young and naive the people that i was with, "my friends" were using me for my money. With time I went deeper into those things and i even got the idea that i can make money with marijuana. And obviously I was doing this to be noticed as well. I was so selfish, and so focused on myself. So it didn't pass along time before the first problems with the police started. I started to miss from school as well and from a good student i became the worst. I had to even repeat my year, I was chased from various schools and after that i quit schooling. In the whilst I started using harder drugs amongst which heroin. I went straight to downfall. I was noticed from everyone, this time for my failure.

In such a short time as 3 years that i used all of these things I managed to destroy myself in such a way, with such a speed that others needed longer time to do it. My other friends were still doing fine, they managed to copy with this stuff for few years more, while I already started to feel it harder. My family couldn't bear with me anymore, but they still wanted to help me somehow. I used to hurt them a lot. I started to steal money from home, to sell some of my things. Once they sent me to a clinic to treat my problems there, but it didn't help. I eventually crushed and I didn't know what exactly to do with my life. It was some time that my parents were speaking to me about going to some place to fix my life. That was a rehab place situated in Spain. ( I am from Bulgaria ). I never thought I was going to go one day there, because I never considered myself having a great issue with the drugs, but at that moment I really felt down, so I agreed. I started phoning that place, I even met some of the guys to have an interview with me. ( As they were having a place in my country too ). I don't remember much of what they told me or explained me of how the place was working. To me it was going to be another experiment I was going to do and besides I already had told my parents I was going to go and the place was for free. It was a state of desperation for me and I just wanted to be a bit out of all that situation I was in.
So after waiting some time, they found a place for me in Italy, as that center was having branches all over Europe and as I saw later in the rest of the world as well.
When I got there I was already starting to regret about my decision, but I was already there, so I had at least to go trough some time there. It was because of the rules and regulations of the place that seemed a bit rigid to me and obviously there was my rebellion as well. There were many other guys with similar situation to mine and other ones that were already better and they were there to monitor us. That was what I found and it was hard to me. I had to learn discipline as well, something that I wasn't used to. But beside all that, there was something else that crushed with me too much. That was the religious side of that community.

It was a christian and before coming to the place I never got that right. I think they told me about it, but I never paid much attention. So I found myself there in a Christian meeting with a new testament in my hands. It was something that I didn't want to hear about or to accept, because I was coming from an orthodox background. I grew up like that, that was the culture in my country and even if I didn't follow it, it was still like kind of my national pride. ( For those who don't know the christian orthodox in europe are similar to the catholics ). And about protestants I knew nothing. So to me everything out of my religion was considered a sect. I didn't even understand the services as they were in Italian. Someone was translating for me sometimes, but when they saw me without interest they eventually stopped. In the same time I was recovering a bit fisically, gaining some weight, but on the inside I was the same, still with the same desires when I get out of that place to continue with my previous kind of life, but in a different, " smarter " way. I didn't understand the reason, why to change, why to give up my old life as some people were talking about that. I was also a failure in all the tasks I was given to do in that place.

I was still feeling down and depressed as before, even if no I wasn't consuming anymore drugs. And I was having some problems with the staff there as they were trying to talk to me and correct me. So all of this was just so heavy on me. In the midst of all this i started praying to God, telling Him that I am just so weak and I can not anymore. I was doing that in secret and in my own way, as i didn't want anyone to interfere with my believes.

By someone's advise I started again to read my Bible as in the first two week after giving it a quick look I just left it one side. Something strange was happening as I was reading. I started to see myself in the word, to see my situations there. I thought it is by chance, but then it happened again. In the mean time I was hearing some of the people saying that there was no hope for me anymore, that I was always the same person. Those were just some people. Yes, I wasn't changed, but my eyes started opening slowly to some things. I knew I was never going to change, especially my religion and I didn't want to do it for the people as I was seeing how some other people were starting to believe and even getting baptized. Obviously not all the people, but we can say maybe half of the persons there were confessing to believe.

But I was seeing something that draw my intention, that not all of them were living it really, that to really believe was for very few and very few were doing it really. I already knew the word of God and i my eyes were being open to some things as well. That struck me and show me that to believe was something special reserved for few. Not even people being some time there were having it. I remember in one of the prayer meetings there before starting to see these things, when the people started praying and singing I felt something different, something in the air, I couldn't explain what was that then, I don't remember If I prayed or what I prayed, but I just opened my eyes and I remember still today that I saw some people with their hands lifted and crying out to the Lord. I could see that was real, I could see their expressions, I could see they were feeling something, as well.

That's why I said in the beginning that it was God who found me, because He placed all of these situations in front of me, took me to the place where I could hear His word, without me looking for it.

So all of this was happening, but I wasn't having clear everything yet. We can say i was still the same. I don't remember when exactly, but on one of the meetings when everyone bowed his head and i did it as well I don't know how, but i saw all my life. It is like all of my life was projected in front of me, all the wrongs I ever done, bad things done to my family, to other people, everything. With tears in my eyes I started asking for forgiveness God. I felt something, something like a burden being released from me. I remember finishing that meeting with joy. Since then many things started to change in my life. Now I understood why I had to change. Because God wasn't pleased with my life. It wasn't just about the drugs, but for my whole life. I finally had found that hope, that joy that was fulfilling my life.
Even today when I speak to someone about his life i never tell him that the drugs are his main problem. (obviously they are problem ) No, they are just a consequence. I always tell him to look further for the other problems he is having on the inside. After this many other things got better in my life. I started to be obedient, to understand the reason why to be as well, I started to copy well with my duties there etc. I even learned Italian and I finally started to understand the messages the people were sharing in the services. I saw that what I experienced was experienced by other people too. That convinced me in the doctrine of the Bible and for me it wasn't anymore a matter of changing my religion, but to start walking with the living God.

Soon I got baptized as well. Then I decided to volunteer in the place. That was a decision I took later on. I felt God calling me in that ministry, to reach others like me. Since then I still continue. Some people still don't understand my decision, but it is normal I am used to it. In 2013 I got offered to go to SA ( South Africa ) where we also recently then opened a place. I agreed and I was there until 2019 doing the same. Just to have a few words about our place. It was founded by an american missionary who left everything and came to europe with the only purpose to spread the gospel. Since then we work and we develop ( we work to maintain our place, we offer our help in a free way, because in a free way the Lord helped us ) with that only purpose even if we are trying to reach persons struggling with addictions, persons involved in the wrong doings. We still believe that only the gospel can change their life, and not only theirs, but to whoever.
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Hi everyone. it seemed the right time for me to tell you part of my life story or testimony if you prefer. This is the story of how God reached my life. We all know that what He asks from us is our faith and to seek His kingdom, but in this case we can say that before i find something, he found me.
Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Staff Member
@Ivan Chamurliev

Greetings Ivan,

thank you for sharing your story with us.
The Lord is good, yes, He is the goodness we all seek and long for and i am glad you found Him.

May you be fruitful in blessing others

Bless you ....><>

Give thanks to the LORD for He is good, His merciful lovingkindness endures forever

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