As a young girl, Allyson’s father told her she had a special relationship with God. He said, “God watches out for you.” But Allyson didn’t experience that relationship for herself until she was much older.
Allyson was born into the Catholic church, and she partook of the sacraments. She also attended religion classes once a week since. Despite all this, she never felt truly connected to the church and only attended mass on Easter and Christmas. “As I grew up, I had questions about the church that I never got real answers to,” she remembers. “I was taught to bow toward a statue of Jesus at the front of the church, and there were statues of other people all around. I thought, ‘Aren’t these idols?’ But no one else seemed to mind, so I thought it was just me. I also couldn’t understand why I had to confess to a priest. Wasn’t he just a man? Why couldn’t I speak directly to God?” She began to seriously question her faith around the sixth grade and eventually stopped attending entirely.
She did not have an active relationship with God throughout her adult life. She got married, and neither she nor her husband was religiously involved. Allyson remembers this dark time. “My life was not going well at all. My marriage was heading toward divorce. I was depressed, angry, and going down the path of darkness.” She would often look at apartment listings because she was tempted to leave her marriage, but something always held her back. God closed the doors toward divorce without her even realizing it.
During a trip to Massachusetts in 2005, God stepped into her life again to prevent her from going down the wrong path. Allyson had always been interested in history, and her trip included a visit to Salem, where she learned about the historic witch trials. She bought a book about Wicca so she could learn more about the topic of witches. She had always felt in tune with nature, so she connected with Wicca instantly. She read the book hungrily on the train ride home. That fall, she learned that a local town was hosting a gathering of witches, and she was strongly tempted to go and maybe even join a coven. But again, something held her back. She wondered why the Wiccan book never mentioned Jesus or the Father; her heart clung to God unconsciously. God closed the door to Wicca, too, and within a year it was not part of her life anymore.
She found Amazing Facts by accident, flipping through the channels on the television. She usually turned off religious programming, but God held her back again, and she watched the last 15 minutes. She was drawn to the way Pastor Doug spoke. “He doesn’t talk down to you,” she says. “He speaks with you, and to you, not at you like many preachers do.” She enjoyed the program so much that she began to watch it twice a week. She learned about the second coming of Christ, God’s holy law, the antichrist, and the lawlessness of the end times. “It was like a light bulb went off in my head,” she remembers. “All my questions from the church suddenly made sense. I realized why that faith didn’t fit well with me.”
She sent away for the Amazing Facts Study Guides and completed the entire series. The guide about maintaining a healthy marriage was especially helpful. After reading it, she thought, “If I want my marriage to work, I have to change. I can’t just expect my husband to change.” She says God lifted a burden off her heart. “I also learned about forgiveness. If our Merciful Father can forgive us, I can forgive those who hurt me, including my husband.”
As their relationship improved, Allyson shared what she was learning about God with her husband. He seemed interested but did not show the outward excitement that Allyson did. However, when she contacted Amazing Facts to find a Sabbath-keeping church in her area and told her husband she was planning to attend, he immediately said, “Okay. I’ll go with you!”
Of course, the devil tried to stop Allyson and Greg, her husband, from coming to the Lord. On the day they planned to first attend church, they learned that Allyson’s mother was diagnosed with cancer. This did prevent them from attending worship that week, but they were determined not to lose sight of their goals. They went to church the following week … and never stopped.
Baptism and Blessing
They began attending church in March and in October of that year, they were both baptized together. Shortly before the baptism, however, Allyson’s mother was unable to reach her surgeon despite her best efforts. Allyson knew this was a distraction and was determined to be baptized no matter what. The baptism occurred, the surgery was scheduled for the following month, and, as of 2011, her mother is in remission and healthy. “Praise our Chief Physician!” says Allyson.
She thanks Amazing Facts for the ways that God uses the ministry to reach people like her. “God bless the Amazing Facts family for sharing His good news and His teachings,” she says. “Amazing Facts is truly being used by our Lord as a way to talk to people like me, who were lost and going down the wrong path. If it wasn’t for God leading me to your broadcast, I never would have known of His love for us, and His mercy and forgiveness.”
To anyone who might be searching for God, she offers this advice: “Never give up on God. God never gives up on us. Hang on to Jesus even if you’re going through tough times. Our Wonderful Lord knows how we think and learn, and at what speed each of us comprehends knowledge. So don't be afraid. Keep the door open and invite Jesus into your heart, and He will teach you at your own speed.”