Marty MacDonald

MartyOVERCOMING FAMILY ISSUES

   I grew up in a home with an abusive, alcoholic father. I lost a sister, who was eleven when I was a baby. My older brother was on his way home from the military, while still being on active duty. He was coming home to see my family, because my dad was abusive and an alcoholic. It was nightly that he came home after getting drunk and beat up everybody in the house.

 

   My oldest brother looked at him and said, "When I come back from being in the military, I'm going to see you and you're never going to touch my mother and my brothers again."

   He came home after being in Vietnam, didn't tell everyone he was coming because he was going to surprise us. He wanted to come to the door and see if my dad was abusing his family; but he never made it. He was killed in a car accident halfway across the country. My dad went in a thirty-day alcoholic binge, and really never came out of it when he went back to work. The first day, he had a nervous breakdown, and ended up in a mental institution for the next two years. When he got out six months later, he was dead; and I was thirteen- years old. When I was seventeen, I got the call that my mother had collapsed at work and taken to the hospital. That was later in July, and on September 17th of that same fall; I was picking out a casket for my mother, and I was seventeen-years old. My mother had died and I lost my sister, a brother, my father and now my mother. After her funeral, I became homeless and lived in the back of the pick-up truck. My life was shattered. I had no one and didn't know what to do. I said, "I would never do what my father did." But, I became what he was, until someone handed me a Bible. They said, "Read this, I think this might help you." I didn't know anything and met a girl. Her dad said to her, "If you're going to date that boy, he's got to go to church."

   That's why the gospel is so important. When the gospel is preached, lives are changed. The word of the Lord, when it goes forward, it accomplishes something. That word came to me that day. I remember looking over at my girlfriend, and said, “When the altar call was given I’ve got to go. Will you go with me?" She looked at me and said, "No, you'll have to do this alone."

   I went up to that altar, got on my knees and wept, and gave my life to Jesus. My life turned around. I ended up marrying that girl. Her dad was a farmer. I love the farm. God called me into the Ministry and years later, we moved to that farm. I'm the fourth generation on a 500-acre farm in Western New York. God has truly blessed us.

   We started a church in our home, and now we have our own beautiful facility on Main Street, right in our small little city in between Rochester and Buffalo, New York. Three years ago, we ended up buying another Catholic Campus that we now have two services in our Main Street location and the third is in that former Catholic Church. My son does Ministry outreach on a Tuesday night there. He'll get between a 125 and 200 kids a week in there. Why do I say all that? Because when I look at a man like Doctor Todd and I think of the heritage and his family and now with the grandchildren, my friend you have something to say that generations need to hear.

   Last night when Cecil Todd was speaking, I envisioned the importance of scheduling time with your grandchildren. To sit in front of the grandchildren and tell those stories, because that's the first and the greatest congregation you could ever tell. But those words, even if you just get someone who can take what you said last night and put that down in the words. Years after you're gone to be with Jesus, what you said last night is going to transpire in the souls for the Kingdom of God.

   Thank you Cecil. Thank you so much. Thank you for working in your son Chuck and your daughter-in-law Helen. Thank you because you made a way for me. Your obedience to God caused me to do what I'm doing.

   Let me tell you a little something about David. Twenty-five years ago, I was invited a 20th or 25th Anniversary the church was having for his dad, in downtown Rochester. The children including David, started talking about their dad. Every one of them wept and I said to myself while I left there, I didn't have that. I didn't have a dad in my life and never knew my grandparents. When I heard them crying over their father, I said, "I want that in my life." His dad is the worst guy in their life, in the world to get back with a phone call. You could text him a hundred times, he wouldn’t even know it. I'm riding down the road with him one day and the phone rings. He's driving and answers the phone. It's one of the people in his office.  

   We pulled off the road and started driving his vehicle. He had ten messages from people, he didn't even know. He's the worst on that, but let me tell you what he is good at. One day, I learned a heart-wrenching thing about one of my kids. It broke my heart. He was going to throw in the towel, give up on his home and his family. He said, "I don't care what you say, dad, I'm done."

   I said, "Will you go with me and see Pastor Rob?" We went and sat in the Starbucks. He stood and said something profound. But we left there. It wasn't a day and a half later when he called me, he said, "Dad, I'm so sorry. I want to come home."

   Psalm 30:1, "I will extol you Oh Lord, for you have lifted me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me. Oh Lord, My God I cried out to you and you healed me. Oh Lord, you brought my soul up from the grave, you have kept me alive that I should not go down to the pit, sing praise to the Lord, you saints of His and give thanks to the remembrance of his Holy name for his anger--" this is the verse I want to just kept on just for a moment-- "his anger is about for a moment. His favor is for life. Weeping man door for a night but joy comes in the morning."

   I just want to encourage you today that maybe some of you are here and you felt that sometimes that life has just been too much. Things have been too painful in your life. You felt like you just need to throw in the towel, you've had enough about everything. You can't seem to do anything right, the accumulated stresses, the disappointments in your life, they just keep on mounting up and it seems to be too much to bear and David in the Psalms, he's reviewing his life and its ups and downs.

   You have to know in your life and mind that you will always come to a place where you will face a challenge from time to time. Just because you know Jesus, does not mean it won't rain in your life. You will go through some difficult times, and you will face some challenges. But the differences between you and the people that know Christ is that He is in your life. He will bring you through whatever it is that you're walking in or however it is that you're finding yourself in life and that you can find rest in Him. You can find a place of solace in the courts of our God. 

Marty and Wife 

 

https://thecitychurch.com/

 

210 East Main Street

 

Batavia, NY 14020

Marty's Hearing His Voice Testimony

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