As in any relationship, let me start by giving you my name, but first off I want to let you know that I truly am honored that you would take your time to try to get to know me! I never want to take your time for granted… so my prayer is that by getting to know me, you will get to know something greater than anything that I can offer…
My name is Jonah Fair.
Throughout my life, I was the type of guy who always smiled and laughed, and even to this day I hurt at conflict and will do anything I can to create peace… yet all of my life I had none. All of my life from the moments when I would wake to the moments when I would sleep, I lived life simply with the little peace of the thought that I was okay… Goodness… it’s so easy to deceive ourselves to settle for less then the best when things are okay. It’s so easy when everything is okay to be blind to the fact that something is not… Something is missing…
… Something is not right here.
But, let me start at the beginning…
At age five I prayed a simple prayer asking Jesus into my heart and truly believed that Jesus Christ was the Son of God and died for our sins… Including mine. I believed in Jesus as I believed in Santa Clause.
How was it that as time went on, I didn’t feel any difference? I felt no different with such a BIG decision? “What is going on?” I would think…
… “Don’t worry, everything is okay” I would respond.
Recently I read a quote from Martin Luther where he stated, “Whatever your heart clings to and confides in… is really your God.” I would find out June 2011, that I previously made a god out of all that was tangible around me… words aren’t enough to reflect a thanks appropriate enough to our Creator and Savior for saving someone like me from a slow but real death…
… gladly giving my life is the only option.
If I may, allow me to fast forward to 2011. This year was unlike any year of my life… For a series of events unfolded to help me seriously answer my questions and seek an answer to the void in my life. All along I had a thirst for a Savior that I never knew…
…yet for all my life I was oblivious to that fact that I didn’t know Him and that I truly didn’t have everything under control.
The year was 2011
My life hit a wall. Out of nowhere to me, I became face to face with brokenness: I found out that my parents were getting separated and seeking divorce. I understood that for so many this is a norm; however, nothing can prepare you for the moment it isn’t a statistic… But you and your family becomes a statistic.
Although I have been BLESSED with amazing and loving parents, I felt as if my heart was being ripped out. At the time I did not understand why this was happening to me, but now, I see that this event would give me the strength and the humbled heart needed to recognize my emptiness and give my life to Who makes us whole.
Even though there was so much more things going on behind the scenes that hurt me to my very core,
The next event, like the first, took me off guard…
It was a day after prom and everything was fine.
I was happily in a year-long relationship with a beautiful girl…
But I couldn’t shake a feeling that I needed to break up with her….
There was a faint peace even though no part in me desired to do this, I was so puzzled! “Why would I ever do that?!” I wrestled with myself…
And as I know now…?
That faint whisper was the same Spirit of God from Genesis 1:2 moving things into their proper position for use by my Creator Himself.
Somehow I gathered up enough strength to break up with her even though no part of me wanted to. This voice inside caught me off guard. Not only did it at that time bring confusion and heartbreak to someone that I cared about deeply, but it broke my heart and haunted me for a while just how we can truly never be sure of anything in this world. This event, mixed with the other, created the perfect storm for the next and final tipping point to come.
Only now do I see why You spoke to me that day…
You wanted me completely surrendered
…And only You
Alone… Lonely… Confused… Angry… Sad… Depressed…
I felt as if I had lost all the things that were holding me up
in a matter of three months…
But through this hard time…?
Lord, You were working on me,
You were secretly repairing me,
You were preparing me…
Preparing me for what…?
You were preparing me for a new life...
For the first time in 17 years…
During the month of May…
I opened my bible…
Not because I was told too,
But because I WANTED too…
What is funny now…?
You were holding me…
…And I didn’t even notice…
On that dark night in June, I was a wreck. I remember the tears that I cried very well.
I felt as if everything was falling around me. I forgot what love was.
I was completely broken.
I will never forget the events that occurred next, I remember around midnight yelling with all my lungs and heart repeating over and over: “Jesus! Take this away from me! Jesus! Take this away from me! Jesus! Take this away from me! Jesus, please! I am nothing without you. Come into my life!” Every bit of me wanted death; however, I did not want to cease living… every bit of me cried out for a Savior.
It’s crazy that whenever we as humans are low, we call out the name of the Lord.
I’ve found that even those who don’t believe in him still call out his name.
Why is this?
… I believe that the reason?
there is power to the name, Jesus…
I will never forget that on that night in June, I felt the power of the Lord, and I got out of the bed immediately falling to my knees speaking not to myself, but to the Lord, and because I was speaking to Him I knew what I was saying but I heard nothing of what my sobbing voice was saying, not even to this day do I know. I have spent so much time over the years looking for loving arms to hold me and the same arms that I felt were holding me, I now felt were betraying me from many angles. I searched everywhere in my world around me for healing arms, arms that would never leave… never fail… but nothing seemed to heal the hurt and damage inside my soul. Nothing could heal me, not my friends, not my loved ones, and not my family. But on that night, I found the cure to my broken heart mind and soul… I found the arms of the Lord right where I was at; I found the Lords arms kneeling, broken, with arms up and tears down… on the cold floor by my bed.
As I was on my knees I remember shaking and breathing uncontrollably. All my life I heard of testimony similar to this and I would honestly laugh. I’m such a fool, because in that moment I was doing exactly what I would laugh at! I would compare my prayer on the floor to the prayer of the prophet Jonah that he made from inside the great fish (Jonah 2:2-9).
“In my distress I called to the Lord,
and he answered me.
From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help,
and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the depths,
into the very heart of the seas,
and the currents swirled about me;
all your waves and breakers
swept over me. I said, ‘I have been banished
from your sight;
yet I will look again
toward your holy temple.’ The engulfing waters threatened me,
the deep surrounded me;
seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I sank down;
the earth beneath barred me in forever.
But you, Lord my God,
brought my life up from the pit. “When my life was ebbing away,
I remembered you, Lord,
and my prayer rose to you,
to your holy temple. “Those who cling to worthless idols
turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise,
will sacrifice to you.
What I have vowed I will make good.
I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’” And the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.“
I became born again.
I was born again because: I admitted I was a sinner (Romans 5:8, Romans 3:10), I asked the Lord to wash away my sins (Jonah 2:9), I believed that Jesus died for my sins on a cold cross only to rise three days later (Luke 23:33-34, Acts 16:31), and I asked Jesus to not only come into my life, but to completely control my life. Instead of a checklist… I called out with EVERYTHING as personally as I ever have spoken with someone before
On that night I KNOW that I did not just rededicate my life to the Lord, but I was truly born again. I always knew of the Lord… But never knew Him. I asked the Lord to come into my life not because someone was telling me too (like when I was younger), but because I finally understood the strength and love of God. Every Christian I have ever known always talks about being born again but literally, I was born again with a new mouth, eyes, mind, ears, and heart. I have a thirst and hunger for his word, my ears seek his worship, my eyes are open to the hurt in this world but also the beauty of his creations, and my heart and mind are open to your voice and truth.
I have been truly given a new body, new eyes, new mind, Lord I have truly been born again! You have helped me over wave after wave of heartache. You have given me peace at the times where I’ve felt none. There is no doubt that it was you Lord… No doubt at all. For that reason, this is why I dedicated my life to your will. I am honestly humbled at your presence and it seems like no one understands. My friends, my family, no one truly understands how you truly saved me… Lord you saved me when I felt no reason to save myself. It’s hard to say it Lord… But I… The person who always has a smile on his face… Felt like the purpose of my life was running out…
On that night in June, I felt your hand …
But that wasn’t the only time I felt your hand… Lord in a short period of time, you completely transformed me.
I remember the next day I felt so weird, I felt as if everything I “knew” about life was thrown out the window. I felt like a new kid at a new school, scared of the newness around me. Even though everything on the outside was the same,
On the inside…?
I was completely different.
Completely different in only ONE DAY after you came into my life.
I felt a burning desire for You on that day…
You and I both know… That up to that point?
I NEVER had one for You.
But I found myself praying to you CONSTANTLY that day.
This is something that has carried with me…
Even to this current day.
Many do not understand this change in me and to be honest…?
I don’t completely understand myself.
Lord why me? Why have You blessed me so much?
That summer Lord, I realized what happened that night in June…
I realized that I asked you to come into my life.
The night I was born again…
I can’t explain how truly new I feel!
You have given me new life!
It just so happened that I had many trips planned that summer… trips where I had time to be alone. I traveled the United States.
…From Florida to Kansas City…
Lord, You even had a job planned for me! A Job that taught me so much about life!
Through many hard and amazing times that summer,
I was being prepared for something,
and this I can see now…
You used that summer to give me opportunities to find myself, and to also find your blessings. I grew spiritually so much… So fast! But through it all… most importantly that summer, you revealed your plan and purpose for me…
To enter into Your ministry.
I was TERRIFIED!
Lord I know I’ve given my life to You, but me?!”
At first, the more I thought about it the more I got sick in my stomach!
I felt like I was going crazy!
I remember it was a couple of months after this, for the first time… I felt a pull.
I remember telling a close friend that the previous night I feel a pull to go into the ministry,
but that I was terrified
And she looked straight into my eyes and said,
“Jonah I don’t doubt it… I think the Lord wants you to go into the ministry.”
…I will never forget that moment as long as I live
From that week on Lord, you attacked my heart. You overwhelmed me!
I felt Your hand on me again. I remember as I laid in my bed, in a one person dorm room at Coastal Carolina… I remember hearing Your voice call to me, quiet, and calm me.
Quickly and almost violently I found my gift… Speaking.
I’ve always had a passion for kids,
But Lord you reassured me that you wanted me to enter the ministry.
It wasn’t long before I was speaking in front of crowds full of all ages about your love.
But still! I was scared…
On the outside I am extremely outgoing and best friends to complete strangers,
But deep down…?
I am very shy and full of worry.
So knowing this, I was scared…
Lord you are the only one that truly knows this.
During this time, and honestly even today, the Devil throws all he has at me.
He tries to convince me that I only speak to bring praise to myself,
he tries to remind me of the horrible sins I had committed against you,
he tries to put chains around my neck,
The same chains which I know so well!
…worry, lust, and anxiety.
Satan ultimately tried during that time to remove my faith,
But he failed and STILL fails to realize
that you Lord,
are inside of and next to me…
you are within.
The night I spoke from Your word, I realized what amazing God-given talent
YOU have given me.
Thank You Lord.
After that night, I was convinced in my calling. I went home and changed EVERYTHING!
I erased my collection of music (and only you know how hard this was for me) and I dedicated EVERYTHING to You. Lord, this was the beginning of my ministry. This same ministry continues today.
Honestly… Lord you are the majority of what I talk and think about. You have seriously infected me. You have taken over me. You have given me new Life. And this new life… is yours to mold. I am yours to mold. This type attitude is the driving force behind the Psalms in the bible… And it’s amazing that I feel what they felt over 4000 years ago.
Lord, I speak to you not for an audience, not for applause,
but as a young man with thanksgiving.
A young man speaking one-on-one with his father,
which is you Jesus.
I pray that if there is anyone out there in need of your hand tonight, I pray that You may reveal yourself to them like you did to me on that night…
The night that I realized that my life was Yours.
Father again I give my life to You to shape me into a revolutionary man, son, brother, husband and dad. I pray that You comfort my beautiful wife who if it is in Your will is out there. Let her know that a surrendered man of God will come and Love her like she has never felt before by being a man who is led by You and You alone Jesus. We will worship You together Lord and point others to You. By Your Grace we will have beautiful kids that will genuinely worship you Lord. Let her know that it’s okay… I am real… but you are shaping me,
You are shaping US so that we can glorify You with everything.
Thank You Lord for giving me the Holy Spirit… and even though I type this, You know the person behind this text, You know my heart, and You know my mind (Psalm 139).
Thank You Lord for allowing me to desire freedom from my addictions and giving me strength to break the chains that hold me down!
Thank You for giving me opportunities to communicate and spend time with you
Wherever… However… and Forever
I am humbled at Your feet. I am nothing. nothing without You.
Simply… Thank You Lord,
Thank You for what You have done with me. Thank You for heartbreak. Thank You for storms. Thank You for pain. Thank You for tears.
For I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for all the above…
But more importantly?
With ALL of my being
I am truly loved
Thank You for showing me Love…
Showing me love when I needed it the most.
And even though
every, single, day, I am growing…
I will trust in You
You’ve taken care of me.
You have changed my life
Lord… Thank You. I am Yours completely, I trust in You. I have faith in You.
Use me for Your purpose.
In Your Holy Name I pray,