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There IS a God in Heaven

Wes Peppers


Wes Peppers

Pastor, Traverse City & Kalkaska, Michigan




  • September 4, 2010
    10:00 AM
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good morning everyone I know I assume be here with you and this is not the typical Sabbath school at Manassas are my personal testimony so it's always a delight for me to share what God is not my life and even as I say those words I almost will up with tears because my life is one that God I believe he's done so many things for me and in the last year especially he worked a miracle my life is about to share with you but I'm so happy to be here at SMU I see no my wife this morning that when we know we first arrived here we drove for ten and a half hours to get here yesterday and we were pretty exhausted I was pretty tired I came in and sat down under the tent and just when the singing started my heart this job because I could sense the Holy Spirit is voice and just the spirit of the leadership and the young people that are attending is just such a blessing for us to be here and even though I drove for ten and a half hours I feel energized a man and so I need to be more energized to share what Jesus is done in my life you know each one of us have a testimony no matter who we are never what her background has been dramatically been raised in the church are we left a life of drugs and alcohol we left the world behind we all have a story to tell a man and God is done great things in the lives of his people so before I share that story of mine with you I pray that you'll just by your heads with me as I ask God 's blessing father in heaven this morning as we share Lord I have no business standing up here except that I tell wondrous story what you done for me and Lord I pray this morning that as I share your story which is also my story that parts would be moved Lord and that are our hearts and our minds to be drawn closer to you Lord and that we would not be the same people we leave SWI C is one retained rest of the testimony to the Psalms the sermons of the workshop this weekend more online to be radically transformed and that we would stand as a people ready to wait you when you come in those clouds very very soon or this morning move our hearts send your Holy Spirit to guide and lead us we pray in Jesus name we ask a man on a bike to determine your Bibles to the book of Jeremiah chapter nine and after turning their opponents pounced to share with you a combination of my personal testimony this evening my personal testimony and also the testimony of God healing me in the last year last year I had cancer and the amounts relate their stories and not romantic about an hour hour and fifteen minutes for each amendment attempted both in the next thirty minutes so I would have to leave a lot out what Juergen afraid for me right that God will help me to get through it own invite you to turn and read with me Jeremiah chapter nine verse twenty three and twenty four these two verses perfectly describe my life before it became a Seventh-day Adventist and after thus says the Lord verse twenty three let not the wise man glory in his watch wisdom nor let the mighty man glory in his room at the rich man glory in his book let him who glories glory in this that he understands and knows me that I am who the Lord exercising lovingkindness judgment and righteousness in the earth friend these I delight says the Lord let a beautiful passage my life revolves around those two passes because before that Christ my life revolves around verse twenty three I gloried in my wisdom I glory in my minds and I glory my riches since that time that I've accepted try I'm hoarding have already grew up as a Seventh-day Adventist new zero hands wow looks like the overwhelming majority I did not grow the Seventh-day Adventists hold in fact most of my family none of my family newest Seventh-day Adventist ones my parents were not Christians when I grew up as a young person I went to church sometimes with my grandparents but that was about the extent now as I grew up I had fire red hair and a yell you can tell that now I don't let my bill that my hair or lack of the deceive you I'm only thirty years old though I look a little bit older because my lack airport I was growing up at school and a lot of hair and my hair was fire red and what is my last name so you can imagine you can imagine the kind of treatments that I got from the advocates one of the blessings I had was that I was always the largest kid in my class and so they didn't get too close to me when they would say that now as I grew up on a and I want to remember I believe a lot of things are missed and hit the high points of of my life but as I grew up I became heavily involved in sports and I played was a matter fact I went to public high school and played football they are an you know when you think about a football player typically what you think about somebody that's not very smart trying to think of a big dumb jock right and that's typically what people think about letting us and I played sports but that was not the case with me in fact I was one of the top students in my class so if you look at those two parts of the text the Bible said let not the wise man glory in his wife in his wisdom let not the mighty man glory in his mind and all through high school I did those two things I became one of the best football players in the state of Alabama and going into my junior and senior year I was I was basically the idol of the community all the younger class man looked up to me even the older classmen looked up to me the whole communities saw this big start this great football player no one ever play college football for my high school before everybody was looking at me is like that like the big shot on campus and everywhere I went to my community everybody liked me everybody knew me I made good grades I was good in football everything seemed to be going well for me from the inside of my life I was a different person altogether my heart was was empty I felt like I was incomplete even though I had everything in an applet of my life to the world said I needed to be successful yet I still felt empty and alone in tenth grade I started going out with the older guys on the football team we will go out drinking together on the weekends you know I'm in tenth grade the seniors invited go somewhere naturally want to guilt you want to be like the mess when I did and so I would start drinking with them on the weekends and pretty soon it became one or two nights a week and after some time I got to where I became so addicted to alcohol that was taking at the school with me in tenth grade and drinking a behind the teachers back and very rapidly within about six months of all that I became known as the school alcoholic and it was a tragedy because all these people were looking at need to be the star and here I was letting everyone down well my football career was escalating and I had a good opportunity to play college football so my high school coach told me one evening he said look if you don't stop all the stuff he said you throw your entire future way you said you need to need to put this away you need to focus on your studies need to focus on football and do what's right and he said and anger to be successful if you don't him be just like a bunch of these are the losers are a mystery as so by my own strength I put that step away for the next couple of years and my football I I continue to get bigger activity to get stronger by the time I was a senior in high school I was bench pressing about four hundred and fifty pounds and I was squatting almost seven hundred pounds with my legs I ran a four eight nine forty and I again I was one of the best football players around and sold to dance and Mike in my high school years rapidly change my life the first one had to do with you guess it football and the fourth gale my senior year we were playing the biggest rival of the season are are the team that that we had we had eaten them the year before but that was a first unlike ten years we never beaten them and so my coach calls me in the night of their game and he says look the college the University that you want to play at is here to watch you tonight and if you do well there can offer you a scholarship to go play football at their school I was so excited the biggest rival the year the college I wanted to go to was there to watch me nothing could get bigger than this right and so we were playing them at every single year we play them it seemed like it would rain cats and dogs every year and this year there was no rain forecast but about three hours before the game started the bottom fell out of the sky and it rained so hard for three hours you could even see your Hanover interface and by the time we started playing on on the field the field look like a lake it was so wet and just do than five minutes of the game we're all black and muddy and everything well I'd say all that for a reason just before halftime I was having the one of the best games I've ever had in my life everything was going well everything was going great I was thinking about those coaches up in the sands were watching males think about that scholarship announcement ghettos think about that free college education and that good job I was not have on down the line in my life everything was lining up and just before halftime I stepped in a mudhole in my foot got stuck and what might I was running full speed and when my foot got stuck in the mud it stayed in the hole but my body continued to move for and at that mullet my knees snapped basically in half I was about twelve feet away from the sideline the coach said he could hear it all the way out to twelve feet away from the dust that ended my high school football career that University I wanted to me to play for them they never called me again and I was absolutely devastated my entire season down the drain I ended up having to have surgery that was the first event that happened in my life there really began to change me and you know when you think about when you think about that type of the scenario you can be going through life and you can have everything that the world says you need to be successful as a not for you can have money you can have a good education you have a good policy can have all those things popularity and reputation you can have all those things and in one second all those things can be taken away from you in a moments in the twinkling of an nine hour mass this morning if you consider your own life maybe you have all those things if those things were taken away from you and one seconds would you be able to go home and look yourself in the mirror and still have integrity would you be able to look in the mirror and say I don't need those things because what's on the inside of my life was in my heart is greater than those things ever were what controls your life today because of its external things of its money if it's well if it's a good job of incentive those things friends limit tell you why those things are not a flash in the pan when Jesus comes it's not a matter what you have is not a matter what you had all this in a matter is what's on the inside of your heart when Jesus Christ comes in the class I was a wise enough to realize that that point my life and so by the second thing that happened in my life it was a real turning point was in my senior in high school my parents decided that they have twenty years of marriage they were no longer to be together my father beside that actually having another woman on the side and he ended up leaving my mother for another woman when he did that it's really drawing here is an unnoticed that's really hot dry more arid than most places who my mouth is really dry and so my dad decided he didn't want to live with my mother anymore and so he left he moved out and when he did that my mother really kind of lost herself she began to become depressed she would come home from work I had a swell girl 's sister I was seventeenth my mother would come home from work she would change her clothes as she would leave she would say I told one or two o'clock in the morning looking for my dad trying to find out who he was with what he was doing and where he was at an cell phone number of months my sister and I were left to fend for ourselves one day I came home mom was laying on the couch I noticed that something wasn't quite right cheek she was always crying laying around trying to press something singularly different today her speech was slurred she she didn't she was in her right mind and so I ended up calling my dad and telling him what happened and so he table over the house and when he came then he told my sister not to vote for bedrooms and that he went to talk my mom a few minutes later I heard him actually leaving the house so I ran out after my said what's happening where you going is that your mom is sick and on the go pick up some medicine of the store I be back in thirty or forty minutes I said all right so I waited thirty minutes past he wasn't back an hour went by he wasn't back an hour and a half went by and he still wasn't back and so I began to get naturally even more worried because mom got worse so I called my grandparents I said what should I do mom is sick vessels you back he's not here they said you better call an ambulance so I called an ambulance they took her to the hospital and we later found out that that day my mother had tried to end her life she took twenty five sleeping pills trying to go to sleep so that she could never wake up now what is even more significant about that was that when I told my dad that my dad later admitted that she told him she had done this and he left her there never intending to come back he wanted her aunt of his life he didn't want anything to do with her and he wanted to live his life without the restraint of her always bothering him all the time so he left her to die when I found this out I told my dad I said you know I said you never get to see my face again I don't want to ever see you ever get to my life I said when you die I will come to your funeral for one reason and that assisted on your grave and leave that's what I told my dad I said it in a few more choice words than that but I was unconverted time but that's how I let them for about three years I didn't see my dad and so I went to I would actually went and played a year or two years of college football absolutely hated it with a passion I was terrible is another I came back home and I went back to I quit that I came back home I went to the junior college close to my house what was there in junior college I I developed this attitude of my life I said to myself you know of all the negative things that happen in my life if God is so good why is he allowing things like this to happen to me the elders want to be here this if God loves me personally why does he not do something in my life why is he allowing all these things to happen and so I determine my life I said to myself you know what I don't I don't I don't need anybody I said I don't see how God could even possibly exist so I developed this idea that I was to become an atheist I didn't believe that God existed and even if God did exist I didn't want anything to do with them I read some riding Senate in England America leisure class my comments painted Thomas Jefferson actually was a series of letters that they wrote to each other and Thomas Paine was explaining to Thomas Jefferson why he never believe that Jesus Christ ever lived and if you reinvest up without any type of background in Christianity or the Bible are no high answer those arguments they seemed very logical and very convincing and so as I was reading that it became more and more convinced that God was a cement that the Bible was a fairytale and I said to myself I want nothing else to do with it as I became a self-declared atheist I lived that way for three and a half years and when I made that decision of my life it was like my wife began to spiral downward he don't get full applaud lunacy can you watch the water to spend down the drain that's what my life was doing I became depressed again because I felt like I had no purpose I became I began drinking again I got to where I was almost drinking on I won't say how much but huge amounts of alcohol every day state my room I was so impressed that I had five alarm clocks in my decide my dad 's written one side to one the other and when they would go off in the morning I would sleep right through them for hours my roommates would have to be on the doors just wake me up my life was a shambles I had again I was at the point in my life those in college I was on my way with a had a good education getting a good education was on my way to a good job everything the world said you needed to be successful and happy that's what I had I had a good job I was making I saved about twenty thousand dollars in two years I was eighteen years old to pay for my own called as I said unilaterally everybody Florida my riches as well and so everything I need I have relationships with girls I I cause a lot of scarring and damage the girls but I had everything that the world said you need to be happy and yet guess what friends I wasn't happy in the slightest in fact I was so unhappy I got more depressed I got more miserable and I decided in my life that this error in my heart that this is what life is really all about them I really don't want any part of life in all I began to think to myself how could I in my life in such a way that would make everyone around me suffer that's our that's the attitude I have on my built in the time when my family shouldn't I should've been pointing my family to God when my mother was going to this divorce no she would have friends you would work with and they would say to what you come to church with us we believe God has the answer for your life I would tell my own mother book don't believe in the Bible garbage don't believe in Christianity don't believe in God it's all a bunch of fairy tales of God was through the real one is a do something to restore your your your marriage is a wise and do something to comfort you I would tell my family these awful things young people would come to me and try to tell me about Jesus and I would make little girls cry and make them go away I mean I was such a miserable rotten person but thanks be to God that he has mercy on the same at the time when I started thinking about how I could commit suicide in and make my family suffer through it because I hated the morning when anything with anybody I start having these thoughts these impressions his impressions Ms. started coming to my mind why don't you study the Bible I thought the first time I thought that I thought let's got a weird while Raven think that I dismiss it I mean I was going to State University I was majoring in our geo- archaeology which involves evolution and all those things I studied all those theories I was a hard-core atheist professors that made fun of the Bible and made fun of Christians in our class meant they cannot so why am I thinking what is that in the Bible but the more I try to put that thought out of my mind the more it grew and the louder it and and and all I know now is that there is a God in heaven amen and it was God that brought was bringing those thoughts in my mind and so they grew more and more and so finally I I I kind of the same thing William Miller did I said look I will study the Bible to prove its faults and when I prove is false a medicament suicide and make everybody around me miserable so about that same time my uncle who had been a seven day he was a first-generation Seventh-day Adventist did come into an amazing fact profs seminar he gave me an amazing facts study guide and I thought it was really weird how I have rejected him several times before for further stuff I told him once I miss and love don't even bother me with this stuff anymore don't get me anything else is every time you give it to me I put in the garbage can save your money saver stuff I don't want to run at the time when I breathe added miles run in my braces came to me so you know I feel really impressed I know what you told me but I still really impressive maybe I should give this to you one last time as I took that study guide I thought to myself I'm looking at him I'm looking at that I thought was kind of weird so I stuffed it in my bag else is like whatever so I get back to my apartment cause I point out I start reading it in the first amazing fax study guide says is there anything that you can trust which was my whole issue right as I started reading all the reasons why the Bible to be trusted archaeology which I never I send lots of archaeology never that science on change lives the unity of the Bible is different things I said you know this is really weird because I never knew any of us up before as I began to study the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation after those amazing fact study guides and what I found astounded me because I saw that God had predicted world events hundreds and even thousands of years before they ever happened I said you know what this is an absolute impossibility there's no way this could happen so I went to the library I pulled out a bunch of history books I started looking up all the dates and checking the history and sure enough can you guess what happened it lined up I said wait a minute this is this is crazy because what this means is that if this is really true that the Bible predicts the future at the Bible predicts the future with a hundred percent accuracy then it can actually be what trusted I came to that conclusion and it made me tremble because at that moment I realized there is a God where in heaven with him I said does he care about me personally so I turned to the Gospels I began to read the Gospels at random for the first time my life and beautiful words of Jesus and how he how he learned the things that he said and how he loved people how he cared about them and all the wonderful things and get them how you mercy and compassion I sent Matt what a powerful man this was and I said can I do the same thing a mile like what he gently that what does he care about me and I turned to adapt in John six thirty seven bested all who comes to me will come to mean the one that comes to me I will by no means why Cassell I said you know that promises true for others it has to be true for me and let me tell you what friends it's true for you today God has a purpose for your life God has a reason for you to live he has a really is a plan that is unimaginable to do and he wants to do powerful things through every single young person here and every single person here at so as I realized that God loves me to care about me and had compassion on the one night I was reading one of the study guides and amazing invitation to accept Christ into your life and I knelt down all my knees that night advising them to tell you I was shaking like this I was so scared I was so nervous I was shaking dramatically and tears were weeping down my face I said Jesus if you're willing please come into my life and change my life all I was twenty two years old this happened eight years ago my brother Sebastian are not the seer but he and I have but the same close to the same birthday about eight years ago I was kneeling I said Lord if you are willing come into my life and transfer my life into something inside of me because I give up on life I can't do it anymore and friends when I made that decision when I yielded my heart to God a peace came over me like I never have before and friends it wasn't one of the most powerful experience ahead in my life when I got up from that prayer I kid you not friends I was no longer an alcoholic I've been dipping and smoking for a number of years I I dropped it like a back like a bad habit that was in that moment I got interested radical changes in my life gingerly so close and I was going to college for four for like three or four hours a day so I had all the sex of time on my hands at that time input my job I started studying the Bible for over a year I study the Bible like seven eight hours a day and let me tell you I'm not saying that I'm not saying it to credit myself for instance I say for this purpose that when I spent that plot line of quality time with God he became so real to me that at times in my room I literally could sense his physical presence in the room I met a CLI that it see if born and see an Angel but I can just sense that he was there and friends the more time you spend with God the more time you spend in his word the more time you spend on your needs the more real he will become to you and maybe somebody here today that says God 's not been real to me and open the last several years of my life the last six months my life the last month of my life but Matthew question and he asserts with all your heart to find God because he says when you search with all your heart you will want you will find me and friends I found that promised to be true every time I've climbed and I met the condition and let me tell you why dies God is remarkable not almost out of time here and I have even shared half of it miracles friends got provided five thousand and nine food stamps got provided five thousand dollars for me to go to half in just a matter of days when I was living on food stamps it drained all my savings pay for college there worked miracles my dad whom I had told I wanted to spit on his grave we made up and he still thought it was crazy for all the things that I did my college graduation was on a Sabbath morning at ten a.m. and he thought I was crazy for not going to the graduation by going to church instead I told my dad looked at I can honor my cell phone lots day after honor him have to be where he wants me to be an my dad thought it was crazy and he said you're going to this Bible College I went to the amazing facts causing vandalism offer four months and that's worth by God 's grace at work now and he said no what don't expect me to help you that you said you need to get out get a real job and secure your gone off the deep end just like your uncle then he said don't don't even talk to me about any help but you know what I prayed I needed a car to go I pray I didn't tell anybody about this prayer I went to visit my dad he said you see that car over there suggests usage are still going to Bible college is a job so going is that it bought that car if you go to call us and tell us all it is also in the person that I believe is likely it's acted to help me God use God as working miracles my wife and I have had no money at times to buy food we pray to God provide a summary would say I feel impressed to give us you hundred dollars grocery card just tongs and tons of stories I could tell you but I want to end of the next couple minutes with this story and that is that last year and were actually in two thousand eight I was diagnosed with testicular cancer and the doctor said don't worry your John this is very treatable we can give you a couple chemotherapy treatments will do a surgery and you'll be fine and six weeks after I found a no not about that size is six weeks the tumor had grown to the size of my fist before my surgery and I was in so much pain I couldn't sit down I could lay down I could walk around all I could do was just hold my back and walked as fast like that in circles around the house as my wife is yelling about my lungs hurt so bad I would wake up in the sweats and whatnot I had the surgery the doctor said you need to have chemotherapy consists right into the lymph nodes of your chest in your abdomen began out there five chemotherapy treatments in after the first treatment I caught an infection somewhere that turned septic and I almost died the doctors I went to the emergency room and the doctors told me that if you have come in an hour later we were unable to do nothing for you and they thought that I was can actually die that night I was in ICU for a baseless happen just last March and I was ultimately in the hospital for forty days we show you wrote briefly awesome pictures I think I have five minutes right so five minutes okay SL five minutes here is a picture can you say this is on the screen here's a picture of me before I went for my first chemo this is the picture of me when I checked in the hospital full of fluid and almost dead on I was on oxygen I was on a number of different antibiotics and they thought that I was literally going to die and what happened was this was in March of last year my half goes to the surface to five of them they came to the hospital admitted a prayer walk around the hospital they marched seven times around the hospital of significance about seven and a March seven times around the hospital and and there is my room and they climbed up on top of this hill and their waving to me in my room now I can't see because I was laying in bed when I went to the hospital my blood pressure was like fifty five over twenty seven my temperature was a hundred for my heart raise one sixty very very sick I caught pneumonia I had all these terrible things and and they thought it was good and I but after that prayer walk there were people all around the world that were praying for me literally around the world I've never seen such a thing as what they did and I'm so blessed I believe as a result of their prayers God answers and after the day that they came and did that for what they did in the evening the next morning I made a miraculous breakthrough when they thought I was going to die and I gradually got better and better and ultimately left the hospital after forty days in the hospital and I look like an eighty -year-old man when I left that was Latvian of last March they told me that it would be a year before I would even be fully functional again and up to two years before we go back to work I went back to work in June of that year in May and May after a couple more treatments but I was supposed to have more but they ended them early because I was declared cancer free and God worked a miracle my life and since that time please bless me have been able to work I preached evangelistic meetings and I believe that God healed me in such a way that his glory would be demonstrated and that people would not question what was at it I would be able to share this testimony with you today so brothers and sisters as I am now and so you see me God is worked a miracle my life I should be in the grave waiting for Jesus to come instead I'm here declaring his glory to you today some of you may say what about what about my relative that died what about the person I care about that didn't make it if there was a lady that I worked with that she got cancer the same time I did and as I got better she got worse and as much as she laid on her deathbed I came in to talk to her and she was premier am so thankful that God is sealed and to her last breath she cared about other people I don't know why God allows some people to live in some people to dive what I do know is that her family many of them their hearts were turn to Christ because of that friends I wish I had time to tell you more my time is up maybe may sometime during the weekend albeit we share similar with you but the point is this there is a God of heaven there is a God of heaven that is a lie there is a God in heaven that has a plan for your life today there is a God in heaven that cares about the pain that you experience and he won he allows us to go through trials is because he trusts us is because he trusts us that we will trust him to get through that trial so that it can equip us to then help somebody else and share the good news with them friends today you may be going through some trial you may have some experience in your life where you been crying out to God is a God where are you like my brother said last night he's right there beside you when I was in the hospital on that bed fighting for my life with every breath I realize now that God was with me he was right there beside me and he's right there beside you today maybe today need a fresh revelation of God 's power maybe today you need a brand-new relationship with Jesus maybe today you've had some experience in your life is so unbearable it's hot don't born any longer I would say what friends the answer today is Jesus Christ is the answer is his love his mercy his compassion on our lives today before we close I wanted to say we don't have music we don't have all those things for them maybe somebody here today that wants to say this is not for everybody but maybe somebody here today that wants to say Lord show me a fresh revelation of your love for me let me haven't a fresh experience with you let me this be the moment where I start over why give everything to you where I put everything in your hands why hold nothing back today all the pain all the suffering all the bad experiences all the good experiences where I laid them down at your feet take me as yours and make me what you want me to be maybe that person is here today and again this is for everybody but if you give that fits you today twenty December you are and will have special prayer together God bless those understanding maybe that's everybody maybe it's not I don't know who you are what I would say today that we all need to see Jesus afresh amen we need to see him working in our lives my prayer for you this weekend is that this will be a powerful jumpstart for God doing things in your life that you never even imagined and when he comes in those clouds France were to meet him or see him and were in no parent because every step of our life along the way he's been there and we see him will recognize exactly who is as we send some everyday reliance is at your desire this morning let's pray together father in heaven what a joy it is worth to share the experiences that you've given some man or there are so many I couldn't share but father I pray for those this morning I want to have that experience with you they want to have a new beginning they want to have a brand-new Lord they want to have more trust more confidence in you Lord as we give our hearts to you we pray that he would take them and just do with them as you as you will and we know Lord that what you will is that you would make us new creatures and we ask for that in a powerful way today your spirit abide with us during the worship hour we ask your blessing now as we give our hearts to you in Jesus name at all does people say in


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