John Brokaw - Jackson, Michigan

John BrokawMy Conversion – August 21, 1961 

I was 23 years old when God saved me.  I was not raised in a Christian home.  My mother took me with her to the Lutheran Church and I went through the Confirmation Classes. 

I left home at age 17 and joined the Air Force, getting deeply involved in all the pleasures of this world.  I am not proud of the fact that I tried just about everything. It is a good thing there weren’t any drugs at that time or I probably would have tried them.

I was discharged from the service December 1959 and was introduced to my wife by a cousin of mine.  I was attracted to her immediately, because she looked and acted different than any girls that I had met before.  I asked her to go out with me.  She said she would only go with me to a Gospel meeting which was held every Sunday evening at the Gospel Hall.  After the meeting one night, when I was taking her home she opened her bible and read to me Luke 16.  It was about a Rich Man who had died and gone to Hell!  I had never before heard this and it deeply affected me.

At this time, the Christians were building an addition to the Gospel Hall.  People spoke kindly to me and I wanted to be with them, so I offered to help. Shortly after this, they pitched a tent nearby at a place called Minard’s Mill.  There they preached the gospel and I went almost every night.  Then they moved the tent to another location.  I went every night.  Even when Carolyn and Lois left for Vacation I called Carolyn’s Mom and asked if I could go with her.  She was only too happy to go with me.    The preacher, Mr. McBain, came to help me clean the travel agency that I cleaned every week.  I just knew he was going to preach to me, but he didn’t!  I was shocked and disappointed.  He just got down on his hands and knees and cleaned and hummed hymns.  He was only pleasant and kind to me.

I remember going to a funeral where the preachers said that they KNEW she was in heaven - for sure!  I knew if it were I in that casket, I wouldn’t be in Heaven.  The same night after the funeral, I was home alone and I got out the Sunday school paper that I had saved.  Inside the paper was the bible verse John 3:16

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son.  That whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." 

 I just sat, reading it and underlining it.  Two preachers, Mr. McBain and Norman Crawford, came over to my house and read some verses to me and prayed with me.  I still kept going back to John 3:16 as that was stuck in my mind, and I finally saw ME in that verse and EVERLASTING LIFE (knowing for sure) that I’d be in heaven. 

John Brokaw