'I Didn't Hate Him Anymore': How God Healed a Victim and Saved a 'Monster'
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Kirk Cameron has revealed a powerful testimony of forgiveness and salvation during his ongoing 100-day spiritual campaign called "American Campfire Revival".
Cameron said on Sunday that a man spoke at his church and told his deeply moving personal testimony about how God can change our lives, even when the situation seems hopeless.
The guest speaker at Cameron's church was author, missionary, and former Marine, Victor Marx.
Cameron said Marx discussed the early years of his life, which included horrific abuse by his step-father. But Marx's message to the church was about the most powerful weapon ever used to fight evil – forgiveness.
Marx endured physical and sexual abuse as a child and eventually escaped the situation, even though his personal struggles continued in the aftermath. After graduating from high school, his life was consumed with drugs, anger, and theft.
However, he found faith and restoration in Jesus Christ. Marx finished his stint in the military and began his next mission...living a life in obedience to God.
Making Peace With the Past
Marx believed that God wanted him to find his abusive stepfather and tell him about all the good that God was doing in his life. Despite the anger and bitterness residing in his heart, Marx knew he had to obey God and find the courage to face his former abuser.
So he set out to find the man in order to share the message of the Gospel and forgive him for all his evil acts.
During an interview with CBN News, Marx said, "Forgiving him was kind of a decision, but then I had to live it out. For me, it was a moment in time."
He started out by returning to his childhood home where a lot of the abuse took place. Marx said it was terrifying as a rush of memories flooded his mind but he held on to his sense of purpose.
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He found his stepfather, then went to the trailer he lived in. With anger rushing through his heart, he told the elderly man that, even though he was a victim of his abuse, God had turned his life around and was using it for good.
His abuser was still a cold-hearted man, but he was dying and was willing to talk with Marx. Eventually, his stepfather was admitted to the hospital, but Marx continued to visit him and share God's Word.
Marx told CBN News that sharing the Gospel with his stepfather "didn't make sense at first" but he could feel God's presence throughout the process.
"I felt God's hand on me," he said. "I could feel God's love for him in me and through me."
'God Can Forgive a Monster Like You'
Marx explained that his stepfather remained cold during their visits but he continued to come by and read him scripture.
"He never responded. He stayed hard," Marx explained. "But we're just responsible to trust and obey the Lord. I did what God told me to do. Either someone will really come to faith when someone is around or not."
He stressed to his stepfather that no evil deed is forgotten and that he would face our God of Justice soon. Then Marx reminded him that the only hope he had left was the cross of Jesus Christ. He explained that Jesus didn't just die for liars, thieves, and adulterers but for monsters too and that "God can forgive a monster like you."
Marx told CBN News that he woke up one night and began to cry because he didn't want his stepfather to go to hell.
"I woke up with an unbelievable burden for his soul...this was intense," he explained. "I got up and started praying for him then weeping for his soul. I didn't hate him like I used to and I didn't want him to go to hell and I prayed for him. I didn't hate him anymore."
He told his stepfather that he had forgiven him but that he needed God's forgiveness too.
An Emotional Moment of Healing
The following day, Marx went to the hospital to visit his stepfather. As he entered the room, the old man told a nurse that this was his son and said that he was proud of him. The stepfather confessed that he had made things right with God and that Marx didn't need to worry about what would happen after he died.
"It was very emotional to me," Marx told CBN News. "Even though he was a step-parent and a horrific abuser, the tender kid inside of you that always wants to feel loved…it felt good. God had touched this man. It felt good."
Marx said his next thought was "well my job is done and I've accomplished my mission" but there was still another step he had to take.
"It was a really holy moment. I never thought I'd hear him say that" Marx added. "I know why God brought me here...to show him mercy and God's love. So I said, 'Dad, I love you and he said, 'boy, I love you too'."
Even though his stepfather committed heinous actions against him, it was healing to hear him say those few words.
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Marx continues to share his incredible story about overcoming trauma and using it for good. He is the founder of "All Things Possible Ministries" which is a faith-based organization that performs "high-risk missions work" on a global scale to free victims of abuse from the effects of trauma.
He also helps military personnel, from all branches who are suffering from PTSD, find hope, healing, and a relationship with Jesus Christ.
To find out more about Victor Marx and his ministries, click here.
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