Singapore-based, megachurch pastor Joseph Prince shared part of his testimony recently about how he found God during his teenage years and the transformation he made that led him to discover God's grace.
Prince, who pastors New Creation Church, appeared on the Life Today Show where he said that at 17 he began to lose control over his thought life, leading him to have recurring blasphemous thoughts about God which triggered a year-long state of depression.
"It got to a point where I really thought I had committed the unpardonable sin. I was confessing every sin I knew how to confess…My friends would look at me like I was messed up then people began to say, 'I think it's his religion,'" said Prince.
Upon hearing that, Prince realized that he was not being a positive testimony to his peers because he did not have inner peace and he questioned why he had not attained "this robust faith and unspeakable joy that the Bible talks about."
"The more I thought to myself, 'are my thoughts right, am I being obedient enough?' the worse it was…one of the most painful things you can experience in life is not so much physical pain, but being self-occupied. Because to the extent you are self-occupied, that's the extent you will be in pain."
A few years past when he found himself broken and upon crying out to God for help, Prince recounts that he came across 1 John 4:17, which speaks about being like Christ in this world, and since then he became "radical" about God's word because it delivered him from himself, he explained.
"I began to realize that when people experience the love of God, it casts out their fear and frees them from guilt," said Prince.
The beginning of his walk in God proved to be difficult, he said, as he noted that his faith increased when his daughter became ill. Prince talked about the process he underwent while prayerfully battling for her health and the submission he went through for God to answer his petition.
Through time, he became spiritually mature and found God calling him to embrace the meaning of love and grace which is an important theme for Prince, who emphasizes that it is because of grace that he is able to have his ministry.
Prior to beginning his ministry, Prince says he "cut his spiritual teeth" as a teenager through the scriptural teachings of evangelist Kenneth Hagin and through an Asian author and preacher known as Watchman Knee.
Prince was appointment as senior pastor of New Creation Church in 1990 but served and an elder and associate pastor before then. Under his leadership, the congregation has experienced phenomenal growth which now boasts over 30,000 members.
Last November, Prince launched his first United States preaching tour 'Power of Right Believing USA Tour 2013,' during which he also promoted his book The Power of Right Believing: 7 Keys to Freedom From Fear, Guilt & Addiction.