Party life was a let down

David Hannah
David Hannah

Persuaded that unrestricted fun and popularity could be found in the party scene, David Hannah rejected the religious beliefs of his parents' generation until all pleasure began to run out.

Also convinced he had already given God "a fair shot", David says that for him "Christianity just wasn't true, and since it was unliveable I decided to find pleasure and meaning elsewhere.

"I pursued popularity and success and even graduated from high school a year ahead of the rest of my class but I gained no satisfaction from what I was doing."

Although it was initially thrilling to push every boundary, David explains that "as each boundary was crossed I began to feel more and more miserable and even felt suicidal at times as the more pleasure and satisfaction I tried to find in life, the less I really found.

"A part of me recognised that what I was doing was totally wrong, but I became convinced that I was beyond saving and that God would have no interest in a man like me."

Not wanting to disappoint anyone, David tried to keep up a 'religious' fa├žade with the Christians he knew.

Then, just before his high school graduation, he was reminded at a Bible study that "God does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart" (1 Samuel 16, verse 7).

He knew that he needed to ask for forgiveness for the wrong things he had been doing and allow God the Son, Jesus Christ, to come into his life and change his attitude.

"From that day on I was torn, I began to understand my own need for Jesus and yet my pride refused to allow me to do anything about it," he says.

"As a result I started to feel intense pain bottled up within me and I wrestled with the concept of living life for Jesus because I knew that I was in love with my sin and that it was impossible for the two to co-exist. My solution was to throw myself even deeper into the party culture."

In his first year at university David was invited to some social events run by a Christian group on campus and he recalls being so surprised by their unselfish behaviour that he ended up at every event.

"I think I was so attracted to this Christianity and the passion which these students lived for Jesus that despite actively trying to get away from them, something kept drawing me back," he says.

"Instead of merely talking about following Jesus I saw them go and do it in selfless ways that shocked me."

It was on one of their camps that David heard stories similar to his own from students who had struggled to live as a young Christian in such a big drinking culture.

"I realised that I'd been wrong about Christianity and that if this faith was liveable and worthwhile to them, then it was something that I could do too," he says.

"Things began to change quickly after that camp and somehow God gave me the strength to quit drinking heavily and shortly after I just stopped drinking altogether.

"More noticeably the pain I felt from continually rejecting God had ceased. I cannot stress the difference this made in my life."

Although the desire he once had to be involved in the party scene began to slowly disappear, David says it was still hard to turn away from all the wrong things he had been doing.

"I lost a number of good friends over my decision to follow Jesus and other relationships suffered as we just didn't have the same values anymore," he says.

"At the same time I felt a true sense of peace for the first time in my life and God gave me a new direction and purpose.

"Jesus has totally changed my life. He took a broken, proud, messed up teen desperately searching for meaning and turned him into someone who has the greatest passion in life to serve and follow Him.

"Without God I can't imagine where I would be, but I know it wouldn't have been a good place. With Him I have all I need."

<< Help came at last breath
Organic poison-free solutions to pests and diseases >>