Six Days…. Six Lives …. One Passion
“A Lost Life Left Behind”
Have you ever, or often, said to yourself “If only?”
The second evening meeting of this week’s Passion For Life event saw guest speaker, journalist and musician Mike Mellor, give a frank and open account of his life.
In a powerful, and at times emotional testimony, Mike, being interviewed by the evangelist Roger Carswell, spoke openly about how his social drinking started at the age of 18 because it was the normal thing to do to drink at lunchtime in the newspaper industry. He continued drinking in the evening as there were always bars at all the places where he played his trombone at music gigs and shows.
Mike stated “I didn’t see alcoholism coming, I was instinctively looking for happiness”. However, that social drinking gradually became more prevalent and from a harmless start to “get a little buzz” drinking became more intense but “still under control”. During this time Mike met and married Gwen, a singer from one of the groups and they had children. But, after a few years Mike became reckless and wanted to “get lost in the world; I loved the flavour of drink, I loved being drunk and I liked the company of fellow drinkers”. During this time, Mike was banned for drink driving and admitted to being violent. He knew drink was ruining his life, that he was letting people and his family down but he didn’t want to stop drinking but equally knew it was killing him. He said “I felt doomed but couldn’t get out of it”.
Mike was still working on the Bournemouth Echo and a new young lad “Paul” joined and sat at the desk next to Mike’s. Mike saw how Paul was full of joy and had “white bits around his eyes and not red”. Paul was a young Christian and would place Bible tracts in Mike’s books and bit by bit Mike sees that God was at work; “My life was going down but God was at work”. After a three day continuous drinking session Mike was racked with guilt and was at his lowest point ever after being picked up by the police.
It was on a Saturday afternoon, just after this heavy drinking session, but unusually for Mike he was sober, that he started to ask Paul about God and faith. Paul challenged Mike and told him that he couldn’t carry on like this and asked “Do you believe in God?” “Do you believe in Jesus?” “Ask God to forgive your sins and ask Him to come into your life”.
In an emotional atmosphere in the marquee, in the grounds of Hindhayes School, the 150 people in the audience, heard Mike recount how at that point he walked into one of the toilet cubicles, broke down into tears, got down on his knees and simply prayed “God, Help”.
Paul gave him a Bible and after going home, Mike started to read it and on that Saturday evening he read from 2 Corinthians chapter 5 verse 7: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” Mike suddenly realised that the God who he thought was too big and important to worry about an individual like him, did concern himself with the “little things” and Mike knew he was “born again and that nothing could ever rival that sense of joy that I felt on that day, I didn’t need to drink to find happiness and joy and there’s been no temptation since because the joy of being a Christian is so strong even today all these years later”.
Mike’s wonderful and amazing transformation happened when he was 31 years old and at the lowest point in his life. God speaks to individuals in remarkable circumstances to help them put their old, lost lives behind them and to be saved to live new lives with Jesus.
The full interview with Mike Mellor is available to listen to here.