I was born in Churchill, Manitoba. My earliest memories are polar bears and mosquitoes. Because my dad worked for the federal government, we moved several times growing up. We finally settled in Winnipeg, Manitoba where I graduated from high school, went to university to study engineering, married, and eventually began a family.
My children soon became a problem for me but not in the way that you might think. I loved them, yes, but while I read them bedtime stories I would think…What’s the point of this life? What’s the point of loving them? Everything seemed meaningless—we’re all going to die eventually, anyway. I didn’t have any satisfactory answers, so I went to parties and tried to stop thinking about the future.
One summer, a co-worker surprised me by bringing a Bible to work. “Why would an educated man need this book of fiction?” I thought. Sure, I had attended church meetings during my childhood, but if there was a god, I didn’t need one anyway. My co-worker would open his Bible at lunch time and we would talk. I began to see how the Bible was relevant to me. I began to read the Bible for myself, for the first time. I had thought I heard all about it in church. I was amazed to find that the Bible was all about eternal life.
I finally realized, if there was a god, this was definitely His book. However, I still did not believe. About this time, I needed to go on a business trip to Ottawa, Ontario. To make the trip more special I decided to bring my family and drive together. However, on the trip I began to have anxiety attacks. Fear overwhelmed me. I became physically sick and could not think of anything to give me peace. Despairing thoughts tormented me. I tried to persuade my wife to take me to a psychiatric hospital, but she would not.
Finally, I called a church. The pastor invited me to visit him. Instead of psycho-analyzing me, he read Romans 3:23 from the Bible, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Then he read Romans 6:23, “For the wages (payment) of sin is death.” That was exactly what was paralyzing me inside.
When he read the solution from John 3:16, “Whoever believes in Him (Jesus) should not perish but have everlasting life”, I was given faith to believe. I turned from my sins and put my trust in Jesus who had paid the penalty for my sins. Now I could receive Him into my heart and have eternal life. A great peace flooded over me as I turned my life over to Jesus. I believe that God helped me by letting me have a little glimpse of hell, which the Bible describes as a place of eternal torment. I would not want anyone to go there.
When my wife saw what God had done, she also turned from her sins and received Jesus as her Saviour. Together we have now raised six children, and are thankful for our 14 grandchildren. It has been my joy to pursue the Lord and serve Him wherever He leads!
[Greg Stetski is currently the director of Bible for Children which provides free, online Bible stories for children in over 200 languages. You can visit their website at www.bibleforchildren.org]