Are You Saved?
My name is Richard Manus, born again child of the most high GOD.
I must ask you: Are You Saved?
Are You Sure?
I WAS LIVING A LIE.
Since I come from a large family, I have a Niece only 2 years younger than me. Well, one Sunday, when I was around 15, I went to the alter and was baptized. The only problem with that is I followed my niece and younger brother. It wasn't really in my heart. This was obvious, because my life was anything but for Christ. For the next 40 years of my life, I was a beer drinking, swearing, do as I pleased sinner.
But one day, Feb. 9, 2000, I attended a funeral. My neighbor had passed away. We were not close friends or anything like that, but I was compelled to go to his funeral. Now you have to understand, I never went to funerals unless it was for immediate family. I would just drink a beer in their honor, say I was sorry they were gone and that was it.
But this time was different, the pull was so strong, I just knew I had to go to this funeral. At the funeral, a skinny cowboy preacher was about to perform the service, and another cowboy strummed his guitar and sang "How Great Thou Art". While the song was playing, the Holy Spirit came over me and I started crying uncontrollably and it wasn't because my neighbor had passed.
I looked to my wife expecting her to comfort me, but she sat silently with her hands in her lap and her head bowed and eyes closed. I looked to my left at the people around the room, embarrassed of my uncontrollable crying but everyone around me seemed to be frozen in time. I felt so alone.
Then the strangest thing happened. The preacher asks, "If you were to die today, where would you go? Is there anyone here who doesn't know where they would spend eternity?" "If there is, would you raise your hand"? It felt like the weight of the world was on my arm as I struggled to raise it. Then he asked, "If you want to know JESUS? Will you raise your hand?" Then my arm was so light it felt like it was filled with helium and my hand seemed to float into the air, and everything became so peaceful. I really felt strange. Something had happened, and I didn't understand why I felt so at ease.
The next day I heard one of my friends use the Lord's Name in Vain and I felt so ashamed because just the day before, I was the one saying it. Now the thought of using profanity wasn't there. I was more confused that ever, what happened? Why? When Sunday came, I attended the Cowboy Church for the first time and was welcomed with open arms. I again confessed my sins and asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior.
I was still a beer drinker, but it was less desirable than before and beer started getting in the way. I had always enjoyed a beer or two after work, but with Wednesday night service, I didn't want to go to church with beer on my breath. The desire for beer was dwindling.
About three months later, I was at a Saturday night prayer meeting, the night before Mothers Day, 2000. I was planning to be baptized on Mothers Day, but things seemed to be working against me, so I asked the preacher to baptize me right then, cold water and all. While I was still in the water I ask Jesus to remove the alcohol from my life. Things went pretty well, I was not drinking. There were a couple of times when I really struggled. I said, "God I know I asked you to take away the alcohol away, but God I've had a really rough day and I need some relief". I really wanted to drown my problems. There is no relief in alcohol.
I drove to Brookshire with the intention of buying some beer and drowning my problems. But when I got there, God was there. I went inside and stood in front of the beer coolers, looking inside at all the beer, but I couldn't open the door. God was there. I was also having a problem feeling so unworthy until a visiting preacher from Australia gave a sermon about guilt. He said " It's not because we lived like saints that God chooses us, were sinners and it's because when we change, we Glorify God".
I started to realize we can't choose God, we can only accept what God offers, and that's His Grace. My life has changed; I now have new friends, and a new spirit. I fell in love with Praising and Worshiping God to Country Gospel music. If I start having a bad day, I just put on some Country Gospel Music and give my problems to God. Now God has given me another desire in my heart, to help Christian Artist get their music to as many people as possible thru the Internet. And www.WeWillPraiseTheLORD.com was born. I thought the website, God gave me, was my calling, but HE was supplying my needs with artists that would allow me to use a song for the compilation cd ministry HE has led me to. I believe that for every Christian song ever written, there is someone whose life will be gloriously changed if they only hear the song. The wall around their heart will come tumbling down and Jesus will come in, that's how it happened to me.
After I had written my testimony, I wanted my wife to read it and make sure of the accuracy. But she was busy at the time, and it was a few days later before she read it. When I ask her opinion, my wife said it made her cry. Here my wife was sitting beside me at the funeral, but she never heard me cry. I really was alone.
My life now, is nothing I have done, but everything God has done in me. And all Praise belongs to Him. I thank HIM with my life.