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Luis Palau on His Conversion

Luis Palau, the Argentine-born international evangelist, describes his conversion to Christ as a young man:

I met a young Jewish Christian from England, about 20, by the name of Charlie Cohen. He led me to Jesus Christ at a summer camp. For the next year or so, while at boarding school, I went to really good Bible studies at Cohen's house. But I began to drift away—stupid teenager, me. I lost my Bible on a street car. It became a two-year "empty moment." I had friends who were not Christians, and I wanted to accommodate them. …
We had made plans to go to carnival—a week of debauchery and drinking before the holy season. I began to feel if I went to this, it would wreck my life. It would be a turning point.
I had not prayed for many months, although I went to church under the duress of my grandpa and grandma mostly. The night before we were to leave, I just felt compelled to pray. I did not have the strength to just say no to my friends, but I knew it would be a huge mistake to go with them. I prayed, "Lord, if you get me out of this, I will break with the world, and I will serve you."
A most amazing thing happened: I woke up the next morning, and my mouth was swollen to the size of a tennis ball, which I took as a rather dramatic answer to prayer. I called one of the other guys and was able to tell him that I was not going to go. That morning was a new beginning. I bought a new Bible and left Buenos Aires to move to Córdoba, where my mom and four sisters were living. … The next few years brought a remarkable time of spiritual growth.

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