I am glad I have this old-time religion in my heart. I thank God I was brought up in a good Christian home. For many years of my life I didn’t think I needed religion, didn’t think I wanted it. I looked at the other side and it looked very bright to me. I thought I could leave the deeper sins alone; I would pick my companions. Perhaps when I got old there would be enough time for religion. I didn’t see how a Christian could go out into the world and work with the rest of the young people and be happy. But by not serving God, I found I was on the wrong track. I tried as hard as any young person does to find happiness, but I failed on every hand to satisfy my hunger for something real. I would go home and pillow my head after a night of sin and there was only unhappiness and discontent in my life.
As I went to church with my parents; however, I heard young people I had grown up with tell how they had given their hearts and lives to God. I thank God that one night I decided to try it for myself. Certainly that was the best move I ever made because God came into my heart and planted real peace and joy there, something that has lasted ever since that day. I have not wanted to go back to the old life of sin for even one day. I have found peace and happiness serving God.
A few years after I was saved I enlisted in the U.S. Navy. I was able to prove God through many situations in the war, serving my country in the Navy overseas. No matter where I was, I can say the Gospel held good and gave real joy and peace—everything a young person needs. Being in the service of my country taught me many things. Many young men were called from their homes and businesses. Their plans and hopes were swept away when their country called them into the service. Many of their ambitions were forgotten forever, but nothing can take away the peace that God puts in your heart.
Still in these days, the hopes and ambitions of people in many countries of the world are swept away overnight. The things that are dear to them—all they have labored for many years to get —are swept away. But when God comes into the heart, He puts a lasting peace and happiness there. Come what may, nothing can touch it. That is the reason I am rejoicing in my religion. It isn’t the things in this life; it is what God puts inside the heart and soul that is lasting.
Just a short time ago two friends were talking about me. One said, “What does he find in his religion?” The other said, “At least he has peace of mind. That is more than we have!” It is just through God’s mercy that I have that peace. There was nothing in my life that made me merit the least of His favor. I thank God the peace I have in my soul enables me to enjoy my salvation.
I can recommend the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all because I found it satisfying and fulfilling in all situations.