Faith > Testimony
believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has
risen: not only because I see it, but because by it
I see everything else.”
of my mom, Janis Doss, at the Fall River United Methodist
Church Founders' Day Celebration in October, 2010.
my Dad, Andy Doss, at Fall River United Methodist
Church's Founders' Day Celebration in 2009
up in the United Methodist Church. My parents were pillars of the small church I grew up in. All
my childhood years were spent being involved in church activities.
I was the youth group president, the pianist, the organist,
the drummer, and a member of countless committees, choirs
& councils. My future wife and I were in the youth group
together. Everyone knew me. Everyone knew each other.
latter teens, I began to feel TOO close to the political
goings on of the church, and the whole experience soured
for me. Thus began my descent which ultimately lead to my
we got married, we moved our membership to a "mega
church" a few miles away, where we spent several of
our blissful 20-something years in relative anonymity within
the massive throng of this affluent congregation. It was
what we wanted after years spent feeling like “big
fish in a little pond”.
my whole 20’s, my Christianity waned. I became very
cynical about all the emotionalism and sales pitches I saw
at church services. By the time I was in my early 30’s,
I saw the church and the Bible as a giant house of cards,
built entirely on mass delusion and feel-good, self-help
programs. I was disgusted, but I thought maybe I just didn’t
get it. Although I had a solid upbringing in the church,
I now regarded nearly everything ‘Christian’
as part of my childhood, and not much more. I just couldn't
take it seriously anymore.
suffered because of my cynicism and a constant feeling of
my soul being in a pit of darkness. I thought perhaps I
needed to cleanse myself of these feelings and jump into
something ‘adult’, so eventually I took the
plunge and joined a Bible Study program.
the turmoil only increased. Hoping to find ‘answers’
provided by Bible scholars who knew what they were talking
about, all I found was a kind of watered-down, everyone-is-right,
wishy-washy presentation that didn’t feed me at all.
I genuinely felt like the Bible could apparently be interpreted
to mean any number of things, and every single phrase could
be taken out of context and related to whatever was being
discussed. I wanted to scream “If it means EVERYTHING,
then it means NOTHING!”. After about 6 weeks, I dropped
sunk to a new low. My Christianity seemed dead, and I mourned
this same time, a lifelong friend of mine, who is an atheist,
began a respectful email debate with me about my beliefs.
I was forced to defend Christianity and the Bible, and although
I felt that I was a believer, my arguments were weak and
emotional, and it lead me to question my spirituality on
a deeper level than I ever had before.
I confided in a dear friend and told him that I didn’t
know if I believed in anything, and the Bible and church
all seemed meaningless to me, and I was very frustrated
by it all, because it seemed like others “got it”,
but I just didn’t, and I certainly couldn't stomach
the shallow emotionalism of it all. As I poured my heart
out, attacking the church and the Bible, my friend just
basically sat there listening and smiling. I felt like I
was in absolute Hell, and he was acting like all this was
SUPPOSED to happen! I didn’t know what to think.
me to some shocking concepts regarding God’s sovereignty.
Instead of hearing the typical “God loves you”
comfort-in-a-can speech I had grown weary of, what I heard
was that God actually doesn’t NEED me and my feeble
attempt at righteousness, that He existed whether I believed
in Him or not, and that my turmoil was actually the hand
of God bringing me to Himself, and that the proof was the
agony itself, which wouldn't be FELT by someone who wasn’t
being actively DRAWN by the Holy Spirit, so it was all good.
My head was spinning. I didn’t understand it, but
it felt good. This God my friend was telling me about wasn’t
the ‘big marshmallow in the sky’, but was in
fact, absolute MASTER of me whether I wanted to “make
him my personal savior” or not. It wasn’t a
feel-good message. It was actually a little scary …
but I liked it! This, at last, was the food I was after.
Maybe Christianity was bigger than me, and didn't depend
on my own emotions about it. Maybe I was a sheep after all.
next day, my friend emailed me Jim McClarty's ‘Sovereignty
101’ MP3, and my life hasn’t been the same
since. That was October of 2004, and since then I have been
completely, personally REFORMED from the inside out. Post
Tenebras Lux: "After darkness, light" indeed.
two years of attending Grace Christian Assembly, and listening
to Reformed Biblical scholars doing solid exegesis, I was
baptised by my pastor, Jim McClarty on February 11, 2007
at Sovereign Grace
Baptist Church in Nashville, TN. I made a public profession
of my Christianity before a room full of witnesses consisting
largely of members of GCA.
here for the audio recording of my baptism and profession
the Bible makes sense. Now I cannot read any passage in
the Bible without seeing God's sovereignty, and I love it.
I can't believe how so much of what it actually says gets glossed over and ignored in much of the modern church.
Now I’m bubbling over with excitement and devotion
to the God of the Bible. My Christianity is not hokey, frail
or emotional at all. I’m not embarrassed or ashamed
of my faith. I actively SEEK OUT opportunities to share
what I believe, and I feel no fear of being shunned because
I am REFORMED or, dare I say it, a Calvinist!
I see the TRUTH: The God of the Bible is SOVEREIGN! What
does that mean?
I recommend the following podcasts to all Christians.
They are an excellent way to keep your mind engaged
and focused on the things of God, especially as
listened to in earbuds as you go about your daily
routines! These broadcasts are not exercises in
feel-good preaching, but rich sources for stimulating
discussions and rigorous defenses of the Gospel
of Jesus Christ.
Grace Christian Assembly
Pastor Jim McClarty
Dr. James White
Intensive live Bible study messages from Grace
Christian Assembly, and teaching on theology and
Call-in radio program covering a range of topics
in Dr. White's sphere of apologetics
Weekly broadcast bringing people with opposing
views together for rich dialogue
Sermons from the GraceLife Fellowship at Grace
Community Church, hosts of the Shepherd's Conference
For further reading, food for thought, current insight,
and sharp entertainment, read up on these fascinating
& Omega Ministries
Dr. James White and Team Apologian
post articles about current events and topics
related to Christian Apologetics."The
Gospel is Ours to Proclaim, Not to Edit."
Pastor Jim McClarty's blog covering
topics of theology and Grace Christian Assembly.
Phil Johnson and his fellow "Pyromaniacs"
serve up some interesting food for thought.
Young blogger Lane Chaplin posts
interviews and clips, featuring his Rightly