Testimony Tuesdays – Shane Iturbide

1. My first memories of “going to church” were more of going into a building set apart from the church and watching veggie tales. I remember going to what I now know was a Calvary chapel church a few times around age 11-12. The first time I willingly went to church was as a teen ager upon being invited to go by my football coach and his family. I just cried the entire time I was there. Every time I went. 

2. One of the sweetest times of being in the Lord’s presence that I’ve experienced was during a Christmas Eve communion service. I was more acutely aware of his presence in that place and at that time than any other time that I can remember. That’s not exactly the question you asked, but that’s how I’m going to answer it lol. 

3. A. The greatest doubt I experience is almost always financially related. More than I care to admit, when facing a financial difficulty, as opposed to trusting God to provide our needs, I’ll try to take everything into my own hands and stress myself out. This is ridiculous considering the fact that God has consistently and, at times miraculously, met every financial need that we have ever faced. 

B. The farthest I’ve ever felt away from God is during seasons where I’ve neglected the word and prayer. This is typically compounded by besetting sin, and, in the end, the result is being exhausted and empty and ashamed. Ironically, it is typically that sin that keeps me tethered to God.  To be frank, I don’t know that I would describe it as being distant from God as much as I would describe it as an interrupted peace. Like when you know you’ve done wrong and can’t look your parents or your spouse in the face.

4. If I could thank God for one thing in my life it would be getting evicted from my house the winter of 2013. That event led to and culminated in my conversion. 

5. My wife. If you want to talk about a “faith journey” the only context I know of which we can talk about it is in the context of being conformed to the image of Christ. The single greatest thing that has contributed to my growth in Christlikeness is learning how to love my love like Christ loves the church. Learning to be a father to the children which she has given me is the second. Though I have much farther to go, I wouldn’t be near the man I am today without her. 

6. My biggest turning point was being arrested in 2020. This was, without a doubt, the most devastating thing that had ever happened to me. I lost my job, I was removed from the position in which I was serving. I had a family of 8 for which I was the sole provider, and we went from as solid financially as we had ever been to 0 overnight. My reputation was ruined, and my pride was shattered. It was the best thing that ever happened to me. I learned more about the goodness of God and the blessing of being in his church through that experience than anything ever before. Suffering that humiliation by the hand of God was the most gracious and beneficial thing that has happened to me in my walk with Christ. My superficial religious hypocrisy was stripped away. It spurred on lasting repentance of one of my most besetting sins. Above all, it forced me again to depend on the Lord for everything.

If I had to tell some why I am a Christian it would be because God, in his grace, converted me. If I were to tell someone what is the chief benefit of being a Christian, I would tell them that they can have peace with God. If I were to tell someone what following Christ had done for me, I would tell them that it has given me life. 

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