Every Christian has an "impressive" testimony. There aren't Varsity and JV versions, because there aren't Varsity and JV sinners. "Dead in our trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1-3) described all of us before God butted in (Eph. 2:4).
But while all testimonies are miraculous, some are unusually gripping and encouraging. Mez McConnell has one of those stories.
Once an abused, addicted, homeless, Christian-despising criminal, Mez now serves as senior pastor of Niddrie Community Church in Edinburgh, Scotland, and founder of 20 Schemes, a ministry dedicated to building gospel-centered churches for Scotland's poorest communities ("schemes"). Here's their vision:
Our long-term desire is to see Scotland's housing schemes transformed by the good news of Jesus Christ through the planting of gospel-preaching churches, ultimately led by a future generation of indigenous church leaders. . . . We believe building healthy, gospel-preaching churches in Scotland's poorest communities will bring true, sustainable, and long-term renewal to Scotland's schemes.
We partnered with 20Schemes to record a brief video of Mez's testimony. Do your soul a favor and watch. Soli Deo gloria.
Mez McConnell's Testimony from 20 Schemes on Vimeo.
Mez recounted his story in a three-minute presentation at Together for the Gospel 2012 and in an hour-long interview at 9Marks. For a more detailed account of Mez's testimony, pick up a copy of his book, Is There Anybody Out There?: A Journey from Despair to Hope (Christian Focus, 2011).
Matt Smethurst serves as associate editor for The Gospel Coalition. He and his wife, Maghan, have two children and live in Louisville, Kentucky, where they belong to Third Avenue Baptist Church. You can follow him on Twitter.