TESTIMONY – Jesse McCarthy, Forsyth, MT – A broken relationship led to a real relationship with Jesus
Hello, I’m Jesse McCarthy. I competed as a bull rider for 10 years, first in a local state circuit then in the PRCA. Currently I work on a ranch in Southeastern Montana, my boss is a former elder of the church I attend and I am blessed to have the opportunity to build a cattle herd of my own. In October 2021 God blessed me with the opportunity to marry an amazing woman who has a heart for God and His Church.
I grew up in Wisconsin where I was raised going to church and reading the bible on a regular basis. I was baptized at the age of 13 and though I believed in God and that Jesus died on the cross for my sins, I didn’t develop a true relationship and start to mature in my faith till I was in my late 20s.
Even though I believed, called myself a Christian, and went to church, I still liked to drink, pursue women in an ungodly way and do the whole rodeo after party scene. One of the events God used to show me how much I needed to trust and obey him with my life happened in my late 20’s. I was praying about getting engaged to the girl I was dating at the time and God spoke to my heart telling me not to do it. Well, not liking His answer I went ahead and got engaged. Three months later the relationship ended. I was hurt by this but what hurt more was knowing that I purposefully disobeyed God. This was a huge turning point in my life and it pushed me to get me back into reading my bible for wisdom and direction so I would be able to discern His guidance and instruction for my life.
By reading the Bible more I realized I needed to be a doer and not just a hearer of the word like it says in James 1:22-25.
With the help of my brother Josh McCarthy and some other fellow Christians I have grown more in my faith, and understanding of what it means to be a doer and to live that out each day.
God has transformed me from a guy who hoped he didn’t reek to much like alcohol at church to someone who has asked to preach on occasion and who shares a devotion and leads the congregation in prayer each week.
I no longer look at women, or relationships from a “how can they please me”, to a “how can I glorify God and best serve my wife” view point.
As I look back over the years, I’m so humbled and grateful that God never turned His back on me, even when I turned mine on Him. 2 Timothy 2:13 (NAS) says “If we are faithless, He remains faithful; for He cannot deny Himself. This verse has been proven over and over in my life and I praise God for His grace and mercy.
Though I have grown a lot in my faith and walk with Christ I still do struggle with sin from time to time but now I’m convicted and don’t ignore it anymore or brush it off as “no big deal.” Instead, I take it to the cross and repent of my sins.
Being a Christian is so much more than just being saved by God’s grace. Yes that’s the crucial first step. But just like only putting one ride on a colt and not having it develop into a horse that can be used in everyday work on the ranch. If we don’t continue to grow in our walk with God, we will be missing out on the joy, and peace and plans He has to use us in the every day work of growing His kingdom. As I continue to grow, I’m excited to see how I will be used in the lives of others for God’s glory!