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Roderick Macleod

Since I was born I was afflicted by the hand of Almighty God. From a very early age I knew that there was something wrong with me that other children and people had not. I went to school at the age of five. I could not keep up with the other children; walk, run or play with them, which made me feel as if I were set aside from the rest. If the weather was bad, especially in winter, I could not attend school. I would fall very often, wet and dirty myself, so I lost a good many schooling days.

At home, since I could understand, I was told about God; that He created the earth, sun, moon and stars, also Heaven where He resides. I was taught about the dos and the doníts of Godís law; that He ruled and governed all things. I was taught in the Bible, the infallible word of God, the Confession of faith, including the Larger and shorter catechisms. We had family worship morning and night; reading a portion of scripture, singing psalms and praying. I believed about God. As the years went by, my physical condition became worse; I was losing strength slowly. Eventually I had to get a wheelchair. For years I have been confined to the wheelchair, and the home. At a very early age I began praying to God to rid me of this bodily condition, so that I would be able to act, work, and play like all other able-bodied folk. Bad thoughts of God used to rise up inside. I blamed God. I was fighting God. What kind of God is He, inflicting me like this when other people are healthy and able to work, walk and play, as they like? I was questioning God. It is a wonder to me to this day that He did not kill me there and then. "It is of the Lordís mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not."

Then there came a time in my life when I started questioning myself. Have you faith, hope and love? Have you saving faith? Are you saved? Are you converted? Are you born again? I began secretly to pray and read the Bible and good religious books. I used to admire the Lordís people, from an early age, particularly how wonderfully they loved each other, and the close ties they had between them, though at that time I could not understand the interest they had in God and all that belonged to Him. I believed they were truly the elect of God; that they had come to a clear decision that they were in the straight and narrow way. All these questions and many more were pointing at me personally. How did they know that they really and truly were of Godís people? Still, I would ask myself, "Have you got what these people have?"

Then the Lordís people began to visit me. I enjoyed their presence and fellowship immensely. I loved them very much and could follow and understand them talking about spiritual things. Through time I came to the conclusion that I had what I was searching for. I understood things better. I was convinced of my sins by the Holy Spirit. I saw myself as a lost, hell-deserving sinner, and I saw Jesus Christ as my personal Saviour and Redeemer from sin, death and hell. All this was revealed to me by the Word of God, in such texts as the following, and many more in different ways: "we know that we have passed from death to life because we love the brethren." "God is love, and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God and God in him." We love Him because He first loved us." I believed in and on God, whereas before I only believed about God.

You may ask, what did I receive through the sufferings of Jesus Christ on the Cross, in my place? I received a Saviour and Redeemer, faith, hope and love. I received grace, peace, and joy in my heart. The highest attainment in life is to know the Lord Jesus Christ. I attained that from the Lord. I believe I was drawn into the Kingdom of God by the chords of love. Christians have been drawn into Godís kingdom differently; some were taken in by the law, others were hammered in, and some came in by the cords of love. I think I can follow in the footsteps of the Godly minister of the Gospel who said, "I was kissed into the kingdom." I think that is a most beautiful way of putting it.

I feel the presence of the Lord always with me, day and night. Even if I were the cleverest scholar I would never be able to put into words the joy and peace that is in my heart. My physical condition is a blessing to me now, and I get a lot of blessings through it. I receive over twenty religious periodicals; every two weeks, monthly, bi-monthly, and quarterly, including The Messenger, through which I receive much benefit and blessing from the Lord. I am looked after wonderfully by the Lord. I enjoy life spiritually. Very often I stop and think, and like the Apostle, I ask, "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God." "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?"

Roderick Macleod