The Missing Cross to Purity


My Testimony

I should without boasting be fair to God and relate with thanks the changes God has wrought in me, to perhaps encourage you that perfection is possible — for the changes He has made in me are amazing and continue to remind me of His grace and power to change all men. (My recent experience lends credibility to the far more powerful testimonies within the writings on this site of George Fox, William Penn, James Parnell, Margaret Fox, Francis Howgill, Edward Burrough, Isaac Penington, George Whitehead, and William Dewsbury, who testified to Christ's destruction of sin within them, resulting in their perfection; click here for a page with links to some of the most inspirational testimonies of the early Quakers.)

As background I was an agnostic starting at age 13, being greatly disillusioned with the emptiness of my Methodist upbringing. At age 36, seeing an interview on a TV talk show with the author of Life After Life, a book of near-death experiences, I began to doubt my doubts about God. About the same time I became very aware of two major failures is my life: 1) I had a serious anger problem, 2)  despite material success, I was very unhappy. This led to my promise made to God: if he would show me He was there, I would dedicate the rest of my life with my best efforts to find His will for me and then do it; whatever, even if it meant becoming a TV preacher, which I disliked and considered the worst possible thing that He could ask. Thirty-four years ago, He answered my prayer with evidence so strong that my hunger for righteousness and His approval still gnaws at my spiritual stomach. (Evidence, which he has told me, he will give to anyone, who humbly asks; but such humility only possible after a life-shattering experience.) In this intense seeking, my material needs have always been more than met. That is how it began, and with much confusion and many colossal mistakes, I proceeded on my journey, which you can read more about if curious; but back to how His power has changed me.
 
I have lived most of my life with two extremely large problems: anger and lust for women. When you go to the teacher within, at some point, you will see yourself wholly addicted to sex, as I saw myself early on. I had been obsessed with women from an early age. This obsession affected my entire life. My second major problem was anger that occasionally burst into rage, sometimes holding on to me for several days.

Neither of these problems were once discussed in all the years I attended Methodist services. No one in my family had even mentioned that anger was to be avoided, and lust for women was never discussed as a problem within any religious or secular contact. I relate this, not to absolve myself of guilt, but as a sad commentary on our culture, which has totally lost sight of the undesirability of anger, lust, covetousness, pride, debt, and pass-time pleasures; truly, like Nineveh, our generation doesn't know our left hand from our right hand.

It was only by faith in the promises of purity in the scriptures and the testimonies of George Fox and the early Quakers, that I believed the Lord could somehow fix me, being sadly broken. (I also heard an explanation of why being really perfect was essential to holiness: "for if one sin was OK, then two are OK, then three,... then 1000 sins are OK, etc.") I found these promises easy to believe, having first seen holiness to be a goal within meditation-centered Hindu and Buddhist books and writings; reading of a holiness and death of ego that certainly was not in the Christianity that I had experienced. But then my wife suggested I should read the New Testament too, just to see what they had to say. Reading Matthew, I could not but be amazed that even though Jesus spoke of a conduct that I had never seen in so-called Christians, yet I knew His words were beyond true; they were more straight-forward and more challenging than any Buddhist or Hindu writing I had ever read. His promise within Matthew of perfection, change, and death-of-self spoke in a loud voice to me; and the requirements losing your life to save it and forsaking all made ultimate sense as the price. It was years later, when I discovered George Fox, having been desperate to find some record of Christian success as described of the early Church in the Bible. Here was an English-speaking man, with a plain, easily-understood record of perfection, purity, holiness, sanctification, union, and the Kingdom. And then I discovered the promised rewards, (beyond my desire of being righteous and pleasing to God),  in John 17 and John 14 – these blew my mind, having already been committed, but without a hint as to the benefits that John so plainly said were possible. So with even greater hope, I persisted in seeking the merciful Lord's help.

I am happy to report, that my lust for women is gone. Every time I used to see an attractive woman in the distance, I would be ready to stare at her when she came closer — now when I see an attractive woman, my mind is reversed without trying — I automatically am resolved to not stare at her. First the Lord has reversed the trigger to lust, to become a trigger to flee from lust; then He freed me so that encounters, even conversations, became non-events, not temptation even necessary to be fought. This is nothing I could have done for myself — He did it all. The only thing I did was persistently and patiently sit in humble silence as I waited on the Lord to hear his spoken words to me; and then to follow his specific instructions spoken to me, often after resisting or backsliding, and feeling horribly miserable every time I failed – and from this misery, crying out to him for years for help. Like the Parable of the Persistent Widow, who finally got help just to shut her up, the help came, (after I had been severely tested for my sincerity of purpose); and I still am amazed on a daily basis at what He has done for me. Now, I cannot even imagine lust for women any more; it has been totally taken out of me. It is a wonderful thing to look at women without even considering them as a potential sexual partner; true grace. I only wish to be able to help them in a pure way, never considering the use of them for pleasure. Every word I heard Him speak to me was Spirit and imparted the life of God to me, as the words were engrafted into my heart; thus the life of God, who is Christ, steadily increased in me to where, at first I was protected in temptation, and then with more words I was not even tempted any longer.
 
We have seen the same work in each of our angers. For many years it had decreased, but now it is gone. One evening, working at my computer, I spilled a tall glass of iced tea, all over my desk, over the floor, and the computer. After my wife and I had cleaned it up — a 15 minute exercise, my wife commented: "You didn't even get upset;" and I hadn't even noticed. In the past, such misfortune would have been met with emotional upset, foul language, and anger that was easily directed at others too. Again, this is not my doing — this is the Lord's work only — He makes the changes, not us. We can only be sorry for our failures and cry out for help.

My mouth has been cleaned up, totally free of my frequent grievous profanity, with only a very seldom, rapidly diminishing, slightly profane word. To my pleasant surprise, when I have a bad accident, even experiencing pain, even as a result of my own dumb move, I don't cry out at all. This progressed from the absence of profanity when crying out, to not crying out. Each time it happens, I am happy to observe the self-control that I never had before. Is this my doing? No! It is completely impossible to plan such controlled reactions.

My wife and I are steadily being converted to become like little children, innocent in thoughts, and full of trust for our Father. These changes are not by our will power — they do not result from restraint on our part — this is not a result of our efforts. Of course we have tried our best in all the above, but however much we tried — we still failed, at least occasionally. Until His supernatural grace had wielded the power to change our hearts, we still failed — but, after His destruction of the inclination to sin in us, even the occasional failures are gone. Restraint is not enough; the sin has to be removed from our hearts. And that is what He does: For this purpose the Son of God is revealed [in us], that he might destroy [in us] the works [sin] of the devil. 1 John 3:8.

I now realize we must long suffer with abhorrence and revulsion to our habits, lusts, and pleasures; so that, when the Lord eventually removes them, we will not even consider for a moment returning to sample them again. Since He will never take away our free will, He has to be certain that we have sickened of our selfishness, to the point that we would never drift back into it again. The cross is thorns, not roses; and until we are totally crucified, we continue to suffer though the seven trials or troubles necessary to arrive at salvation. Count the costs before you begin; you must be prepared to forsake all.

Truly, my enemies are being placed under my feet as I sit waiting on my God and Savior. Every day is a wonder and a joy, to realize the Lord has freed me so; whose mercies to me are far, far beyond anything I deserve. As difficult as the cross is to endure, we hold onto those freedoms that we have experienced to anchor our hope for his future mercies and grace that complete our salvation.

And because of that, I have all the confidence in the world, that all of His promises are true and can be obtained — including Him destroying all the sin in me – or anyone who believes and sincerely tries by waiting in humble silence with patience and persistence to the end.

Although accomplished in secular public speaking, we are not allowed to preach or teach by speaking because we are not yet sufficiently mature so that the Holy Spirit gives us His words as we speak. We are limited to writing on this web site and answering emails received; this is allowed because we are in close enough communication in waiting on God to receive frequent specific phrases, messages, corrections, additions, and occasional deletions from the Holy Spirit. Waiting on the Lord for a good part of the day, I receive on the average of three to four teachings per day, which he uses to correct and add to the web site's teachings; but until I can hear the words he wants me to speak on a real-time basis, I am not allowed to speak about God because such words would come from my carnal mind, which is still alive, though already reduced by His grace. Obviously I greatly look forward to receiving his continual words and promptings; but until then, I cannot relay true words from the Teacher while speaking; I only point the way to the teacher and method, backed by extensive scripture, for each person to be guided by Him, who is in every man patiently waiting to teach and change them. Repeat: I do not guide anyone; I only write how to contact the guide for Him to guide you. But I can assure you, the Lord supervises me very closely in what is written on this site, including the on-line Bible commentary and footnotes; much of the wording comes straight from his lips, even some of which is not in direct quotes. There are also many direct quotes cited to him, including a lengthy section at the top right of the Home page; notice it starts with His words: "Welcome to my site," as He claims the entire web site as His own. When he corrects or clarifies what has been written, I immediately know by his relayed understanding exactly where he wants the corrections or clarifications to be made.

My wife and I have had one other job assigned by the Lord: when we jog, we are to pick up all the trash along the ocean sidewalk. For six years we have been picking up the trash along the way, and I must tell you we have done it with pleasure, because we know we are obeying the command of our Lord; it is truly a joy to do anything he asks.
 
I give you these details to encourage you — that divine help is available and possible, by persistently going to Him with humility to quietly wait and hope. (But just praying for him to change you does not work; you must patiently and persistently go to Him, in humble silence wait on Him, listen, watch, hear, obey....seek God by being quiet while waiting, listening, watching, and obeying — and keep doing it.) My wife has received different help, but just as dramatic. And the extent of this divine help to both of us is beyond what it is easy to believe possible to receive. But we testify that the resulting changes are truly possessed and enjoyed with thanks and praise forevermore to His glory.

Hall Worthington
His Unworthy, but Grateful, Servant

This web site's purpose is to show how to become
free from sin
by benefiting from the changing power of God through the cross,
which leads to union with God in his Kingdom.