I’ve just stumbled across the sermon audio of the Gateway Conference that I attended at Hebron Hall in April 2001. The conference had been organised by my friends at Gabalfa Baptist Church – and it proved to be 3 days that radically altered the course of my life.
The backdrop to my attending this conference was that I had been in full-time Christian ministry for about 18 months, but following some godly counsel from my elders had taken some time out following a very painful and destructive relationship break-up. When I stepped foot into Hebron Hall on 17th April I was overwhelmed by guilt, shame, regret and a very strong sense that I had let God down so badly that I would and should never be involved in gospel ministry again.
It was the lowest point of my Christian life!
However, God had brought me there for a reason, and on the first night Steve Levy preached a sermon on repentance through which God spoke to me in a more powerful way than He ever had or has done since. I was made aware of God’s scandalous, outrageous, irresistible grace in such a fresh and profound way that by the end of Steve’s sermon I came back to the cross and broke down in tears of genuine, deep repentance. The love, grace and forgiveness of Jesus washed over my soul and I felt crystal clean on the inside. What’s more I felt accepted by God and set apart for the gospel again. I had encountered God the Holy Spirit in a way that I never had done before! That evening I wrote some lyrics for a song that recounted what had happened to me. I gave them to my room mate, Ceri Rees, who wrote some music for it the next day, and that song can be found here (track 8).
God used the rest of the conference to further speak to me and build grace into my life, but that sermon by Steve Levy was, I truly believe, the start of a whole new chapter in my Christian walk. It literally changed the course of my life!
Thank you Jesus!