Testimony of Linda Walter – May 2, 2010
I was born in Saugus, Massachusetts to a young, unhappy couple. At 17, my
mother had eloped with my father to escape from her controlling mother. Grammy
wanted my mom to be a debutante; someone who would marry into high society. My
mother was a tom-boy, who was far happier helping her father, the plumber, turn
wrenches. My dad was in the Navy, and absent from our home most of the time.
When he was home, he spent most of his money on alcohol and was out drinking
with his friends. My father didn’t want children, but my mother thought it would
settle him down. My sister Laurie’s birth & mine did nothing to change him, and
he gave my mom little to care for two growing girls.
My mother was very lonely, as her parents and brothers had moved to Florida.
So, when I was only a year old, and my sister Laurie was 2, Mom left my dad and
moved to St. Petersburg, FL to be closer to her parents. We settled in with our
grand parents, and life seemed relatively stable for a time.
When I was 7, and Laurie was 8, Mom decided she wanted to travel and see the
west coast, so that summer, she bought a ’58 Mercury from a friend for a dollar,
and off we went. Along the way in Flagstaff, AZ, my mom met my step-father. We
added another child to the family; my brother Scott. We had now settled in
Colorado. My step-father worked days so he was usually home when my sister & I
came home from school. He was often drunk on a cocktail of alcohol and pain
killers and became sexually abusive to me & my sister. My mother asked him to
leave our home and now she struggled to care for 3 children alone.
From 1965-1974 school and life seemed very unstable. We were always moving to
a new town, starting a new school and trying to make new friends. I got to the
point where I didn’t care. I wanted to learn, but I was frustrated as some
schools were more advanced than others, and I was still trying to grasp the
basics. I longed for my mother’s attention & affection, but it seemed she was
always at work.
During my teen years I became very aggressive. I would hang out with kids who
were older than me and who were into drugs & alcohol. I fought with the kids at
school. I fought with my mother – literally. It got to the point where she sent
me away to live with others, hoping it would help. God had a plan, and He began
to draw me to Himself.
After my Grandmother’s death in Florida in 1970, my Mom sent me to live with
my Uncle Larry and Aunt Faye, in Florida. They were expecting their first child.
Aunt Faye was a born-again Christian. She did her best to make me feel welcome
and would often take me to church with her, introducing me to the kids there
hoping I’d make friends. But my Uncle Larry didn’t go with her, and he
introduced me to some older kids in the neighborhood that were more like the old
crowd I hung out with. My poor Aunt could not cope with a new baby and a
rebellious teenager, and after about a year, I returned to my mother’s home in
During my absence, my sister became friends with a boy in her school who she
attended church with. She became a born-again Christian. She did her best with
the limited knowledge she had to tell me about Christ, but I was having none of
My Mom was into Astrology, re-incarnation, and many forms of mysticism. What
they called New Age beliefs at that time. I attended several conferences with
her on Transcendental Meditation, but I didn’t really claim any particular
religion. I was living by my own rules. My mother was raised Episcopalian, but
other than attending church a few times on Easter; church was not a big part of
I continued to rebel against my mother & teachers. Finally, at the age of 16,
Mom gave me permission to marry my boyfriend, Dave. He joined the Navy and we
moved to Tacoma, Washington. While I was there, I attended a Pentecostal church
service, which was a rather scary experience.
The one good thing I do remember though, was watching a film about a guy who
was in a plane crash. He was flying home in a small plane on Thanksgiving. His
plane hit the tree tops and crashed and he was badly burned. He escaped from the
plane, made his way to the highway, and hitch-hiked to a hospital signing, Jesus
Loves Me, all the way there. He was a pianist, and his name was Merrill Womack &
I still remember it to this day. Dave & I eventually parted ways, and I moved
back to Colorado.
I had dropped out of high school to marry Dave, and decided it was time to go
back to night school, and get my GED. There, I met a girl named Christine, and
we became friends. Chris lived to party. One weekend I accompanied her to a
party where she introduced me to her brother George. There was an instant
attraction to one another, and we began to date. I also met Chuck at this time.
Soon, I was living with George and his Mormon family, and expecting our first
Chris & her two boys, who were 3 & 4, and an older sister and her son, all
lived with their parents as well. Their parents were very easy going. They never
pressured me to attend church with them. George claimed to be an agnostic, and
Chris was too busy partying to attend services.
George & I moved out of his parent’s house and resettled in Boulder where we
both found jobs. Our relationship became somewhat strained because, once I
learned I was pregnant, I didn’t want to party with him anymore. We welcomed our
daughter Nikki into the world in the spring of 1978.
One day, our world was shattered when we learned of Christine’s death. She
didn’t even make it to her 20th birthday. She had married, had 2 children,
divorced, and died all before she was 20 years old! She had overdosed on drugs.
This shook me to my core, as I was living the same lifestyle as she was. At
the funeral, I looked at her lying there, and there was no peace on her face. It
was only by the grace of GOD that it wasn’t me in the coffin. I started asking
myself some serious questions. Why am I here? What is the purpose of life? There
are so many different religions; they can’t all be right! They contradict each
other. There has to be a truth!
Even after Chris’ death, George remained unchanged. This made no sense to me.
George & I moved back in with his parents. Why, I’m not sure, but neither of us
had jobs and soon we were expecting another child. I felt bad for his parents as
I knew we were an extra burden on them, and I felt trapped. They now had custody
of Chris’ boys as well, and here we are bringing another child into the home. I
decided I had to get an abortion. And, I had to leave George and this situation.
Planned Parenthood assured me I was doing the right thing. I didn’t tell George
what my plan was. While he was out of state, I set my plan in motion. I had to
go to Colorado Springs to get the abortion which is where my sister Laurie
lived. Our mutual friend, Chuck, agreed to drive me there. My sister Laurie did
her best to talk me out of my decision, but I was convinced it was the only way
out, and I was doing the right thing. I knew immediately afterwards it was
Chuck & I began seeing each other during this time. Shortly after that, we
decided to relocate to Colorado Springs permanently. We were married in February
My sister and her husband faithfully witnessed to us about Christ’s sacrifice
for our sins, about His great love for us, and His coming judgment upon this
godless world. I was angry at first with this God who would destroy good,
innocent people. Then I realized they were neither good, nor innocent, and
neither was I. She showed me through the scriptures how that in the beginning
God created everything and it was perfect. We had fellowship with God. Then Adam
& Eve chose to sin when they were tempted, and as a result, we are all born into
sin. Kind of a Jello mold effect. They were the original mold, and if the
original has a dent, everything that comes out of that mold also has a dent. And
we would all die in our sins too, if God didn’t intervene. Romans 6:23 says,
the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus
Christ our Lord. All of our efforts and works are useless because Isaiah
64:6a says; But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness’s
are as filthy rags. That’s why God Himself, Jesus Christ, came to earth in
the flesh through the virgin birth, so that He could die for us, in our place.
He is perfect. He had no personal sin debt to pay. He died for us that we might
have eternal life through Him. It’s a free gift to all who will recognize their
sinfulness, turn from their sins, and turn toward Christ, believing; putting
your full weight of trust in who He is and the sacrifice He made for you. John
10:14-18 says he willingly laid down his life. But death did not conquer Him,
for he rose the third day according to the scriptures. He conquered death &
hell. It was a free gift to us, but it cost Him dearly.
It wasn’t until April of 1981 that I finally saw my sinful self through the
light of God’s word. I knew it was my sin that nailed him to the cross. After
hearing a message about the wheat and tares in Matthew Chapter 13: 27-29, I had
some doubts about my salvation and prayed again in August of that same year. I
was afraid I hadn’t said everything I was supposed to say, but my sister assured
me that my heart attitude and what Christ did was more important than what I
said. The sinner’s prayer is not some magical incantation or formula, but seeing
your sinful self through God’s eyes, agreeing with Him, and responding to Him
with a broken & contrite heart.
How has my life changed since coming to know the Lord? God’s word affects
every part of my life. It is our instruction book – our owners’ manual, if you
will. It affected how I raised my children, how I currently spend my money, what
causes I support, how I treat others, work ethics; everything. I have a heart
for the truth, and for others to know it. I love working with young children
through Awanas, Good News Clubs, Vacation Bible school, etc… I also desire to
protect others from false doctrine, especially the subtle lies of New Age
teachings that are so prevalent, even in so called Christian books and
ministries now a days. My world is very black & white, and I can come across as
rather intolerant sometimes, even though I don’t mean to be. It is hard for me
to balance a love for the truth without compromise, and yet be patient and
understanding with those whose worlds are grayer than mine. Please pray for me
in that area.
I also have a love for babies; those who have no voice yet. A Crisis
Pregnancy center in Colorado helped me to forgive myself after I took my child’s
life, and I want to support their efforts to help other young women keep and
provide for their little ones.
God made us and knows how it’s all supposed to work. We just need to be
obedient to Him. Follow the instructions if you want to have a successful life.
Maybe not by mans’ standards, but we long to hear "Well done, thou good and
Chuck and I have been through several, painful church splits, and we’ve moved
ahead slowly, and cautiously. We’ve been coming here for about 2 years now. In
the past, I’ve been discouraged from time to time seeing pastors and godly men
dishonor God through their sinful choices. But, I thank the Lord that in these
last days there are men who still faithfully serve without compromise. If you
haven’t looked for a church in a long time, you may have no idea how hard it is
to find one that still stands on the word of God. They are few and far between.
But I thank the Lord for this church. I thank the Lord for godly men & women AND
young people, who are still willing to serve and keep each other accountable to
the word of God.
What is my hope for the future? Phil. 3:12-14. Not as though I had already
attained, either were already perfect: But I follow after, if that I may
apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I
count not myself to have apprehended: But this one thing I do, forgetting those
things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
May all who come behind us find us faithful.