When I was about 18 months old my Father died. My mother and myself went to live with her parents and brothers and sister at a Public House. Almost the first thing in life that I remember was living at this Public house, here I saw many things which a child should not see. As I grew up having no father to guide me, I became a naughty and disobedient boy, even though my father's brother and sister paid for me to have a good education. At the age of seventeen I started to walk out, with the permission of her parents, with a girl who later became my wife. When I was twenty one my mother married again and lived in London 150 miles away. At 23 I married my sweetheart, who had received a good Christian upbringing, and she played the organ at the village Church at Ipstones. We were very much in love and were very happy.

Shortly after my marriage my wife's brother Wilfred was taken ill with an incurable disease. At this time a Pastor Edwin Jefferies was conducting a Gospel and divine healing campaign in the Potteries about 12 miles away. We knew that Wifred's only chance of a recovery was a miracle, so we took him to the Victoria Hall, Hanley, to be prayed for by Pastor Edwin Jefferies. Wilfred at this time had something that we all admired, he was a born again Christian, and up to the time of his illness had been an ardent Church goer. However, even though many other miracles took place that night, Wilfred was not healed when he was prayed for, but both my wife and myself gave our hearts to the Lord. We were happy before, but we now had an even greater happiness and we revelled in the Christian life. We both decided to go to the Methodist Chapel which was a real "live Church" and my wife soon became the organist there.

I served the Lord happily for several years until one Sunday, it was a Temperance Sunday, a man came to preach who was a much respected builder and contractor, but I afterwards discovered that at the very time he preached, he was building a Hotel at a nearby village, which at a later date I was often drunk in. Although I had been brought up in a Public House, since my conversion I had been strictly teetotal and had never been inside a Public House. I took my eyes off Jesus and thought that if this Christian man could build this Hotel, there was nothing wrong in going to such places, so I started to enter these places again. How we need to watch ourselves so that we do not stumble others. Never before had I been a drunkard, I had prided myself over my physical fitness as an athlete, I was a non-smoker too. But soon the Scriptures were to be fulfilled which states that when the evil spirit comes back and finds the house swept and garnished, he brings back seven devils more wicked than himself. Lk. 11:24-26. I started to drink heavily and also to gamble and smoke. In one day I lost £250 gambling, money which later I had real need of in my garage business.

In 1945 I started a garage business on the Ashbourne Road, in Leek; but because of my drinking, I could not make it pay, even though I worked long hours for seven days a week. Much of my spare time was spent in Public Houses, and much of my business came through this, and was nearly always unprofitable. On many occasions I came home drunk and was quite unfit to live with. I turned my eldest son William into the street, he was 18 years of age. Some of the members of the Assembly of God Church took him into their homes and looked after him, and he was away from home for about 2 years.

My wife put up with untold ill-treatment from me, but like a good Christian wife, she continued to pray for me, and remained both loving and caring. However, nothing she did for me suited me, and one day I came home and turned both my wife and younger son out of home into the night. A few months later my wife came back to me, but things were no better, and I once more turned her out again. During the time that I was living alone in the house, I even sat up all night drinking and the following day I was totally unfit for work, and as a consequence my business went down. Many times I came home very convicted over the way that I was living, I knew that what I was doing was wrong, and I tried to pray on almost all the steps of our stairs, but my prayers were a mockery they went no further than the ceiling. I burned all the Christian literature that I could find in the home, except one or two family Bibles etc.; this was my way of fighting against God.

One night I went to one of my favourite Public Houses to see a special darts match, and everything went wrong all due to my own fault. I fell out with everyone including my friend, and I had very little to drink. Later I took my friend home and dropped him off. As I turned out of the street where he lived into Britannia Street, I became conscious of the mighty presence of God in the car, and while I travelled up this street for about a 100 yards, God drew a picture of my life before me, He then spoke to me and said, 'William you are going to Hell,' then at my side I saw a dark abyss, it was so real that I reeled away from it clutching the steering wheel of the car. Instantly I knew that this was my last chance to get right with my God and I said, 'Lord, I will by your grace and forgiveness come back to you and lead a life well pleasing to you, and one by your grace, fit for eternal life.'

I then changed the direction of the car and went to the house of the Pastor of the Leek Assembly of God. This Pastor, along with many other Christians, had prayed very earnestly for me. The Pastor was not at home when I arrived there, as he was preaching some distance away, only his wife was at home and she was very afraid of me, as I had threatened to shoot her husband, but God had carefully hidden him away from me, and I never knew him until the day that God spoke to me. I went home to my empty house and searched for a Bible to read to get something of comfort, I found my own father's Bible and took it to bed. As I lay in bed and opened the Bible, a small text, a cutting from a daily paper, fell out, I picked it up and read it; it was Eph. 4:32., 'And be ye kind one to another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.' This broke me down and I wept. At about 1 a.m. a knock came on the door, it was the faithful Pastor, Pastor A.G. Roberts, who came knowing that God had spoken to me, we talked and prayed together, my own prayer I cannot remember, but I know that it came from a renewed heart and a tear stained face.

The following day the Pastor, his wife and myself went to my wife's mother's home to ask my wife to come back to me, this my wife joyfully did, for our love for each other had never died. God had shown my wife a vision of myself standing in a pulpit in a certain Church, a vision which came to pass; so she knew that God would save me sometime. I returned home with my wife and two sons to start afresh. The power of Jesus Christ had immediately and completely delivered me from the desire to drink. I closed my business on a Sunday and never saw any drop in takings; indeed, the business began to prosper, for now it was under new management; God sent me many good customers, among whom were many Christians. God continued to bless my family, I paid for my eldest son William to go to Kenley Bible School; and now, by the grace of God, he is a full time minister for the Lord, and as a family we are seeing God do many wonderful things. How wonderful is our God and how mighty is His power, wisdom, knowledge and grace, He can save to the very uttermost. Hallelujah!

 

W. H. Turner senior

 

From: http://www.thesecretofeternallife.com/

 

 

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