Note from Eric: Dave was a fast starter in the computer industry, eventually presiding over several computer companies. Disaster hit and he lost his business, his house, his wife, and his hope. There was nothing more he could do. But Jesus could.
YOU CAN’T DO IT, BUT JESUS CAN!
By David Daniel Wertman
I was a fast starter in the computer industry. And having begun in 1965, I can now honestly say I have been in it, or at least at it, for 30 years.
In that time, I achieved a lot. In fact, I have done just about everything you can do in computers. Starting in the 60s, I was an operator, then programmer, then analyst, then customer support, then sales, then marketing, then Vice President, and President of several Computer companies. I have wired boards, programmed in numerous different languages, designed circuitry, even etched my own boards.
I sold computer services, computer hardware, and software. And I managed at all levels. As VP of Sales and Marketing for Tecmar (the first company with add-on peripherals for the IBM PC) I took the company from less than $1MM in sales to a tracking rate of over $20 MM in less than 3 years. In 1981, Bill Gates (of then tiny little Microsoft) took me to lunch (he even bought) to talk about industry directions. What a rush! I was on top of it all! But somehow, it just didn’t seem like enough.
I left Tecmar, founded my own Peripherals company, was soon acquired by a publicly held company, and it still just didn’t seem like enough.
I reached out for more in selfish greed. I worshiped at the altar of conspicuous consumption, deviant pleasures, and the false god of “self.” And sin was the offering to these false gods. But they were never satisfied, their cry was for – more – more – more – and I just couldn’t keep up.
Although I didn’t know what I was seeking, I became increasing aware that the World could not provide it. Then after yet another company, and another success, I began to ask the question again; Is this all there is?
But this time, it really was different. Before I even could begin to answer that question, it all began to fall apart. First the business went, then the marriage, and quickly thereafter, the house, and the cars, everything. Then, after 2 years of being unemployed, I still couldn’t even get a job because, no one wanted to hire an ex-Company President. “Too Qualified” was always the explanation. I was evicted from a trailer where I had been temporarily living.
So suddenly I had nothing. I had even lost hope. I did not know where I would move, I had no friends (amazing how often friends and money and position, all leave together) and I was truly lost. I was a 46 year old, one time “whiz kid”, with all the answers, who now didn’t know what to do, or even where to turn.
Then God stretched out His hand of loving mercy to me through a radio message (the station I was listening to, faded out and another message came in) from Dr. David Jeremiah (Turning Point Ministries). The message was “handling adversity”, and all I really heard was that “you can’t do it”.. I knew that was true, because I had tried for years and failed. But Dr. Jeremiah said “But Jesus can do it. With Him in your life, It Can Be Done!”
I sat down on the steps of the trailer I was being evicted from, and asked Jesus Christ to come into my life. And as I prayed, and cried, for the first time I remembered my baptism at age 8. And through the tears in my eyes and in my heart, I saw myself sitting there as that 8 year old boy. And Jesus stood by me with His hand on my shoulder. He said “My son, I never left you. It was you who turned away from me.”
He was right, and I knew it. I had chosen the World before, but not now! I will never turn from him again!
I started out by saying to God, OK God, Let’s Go! I am ready, Use Me! And then I just sat there and waited for God to use me. It never occurred to me that as a friend later advised, “No one, Not even GOD”, needs to steer a parked car. And besides, why would He use me. A man whose pride still kept him accepting work that was below him.
Why would anyone who looked at what I was doing (nothing), see anything in my life that honored God? So, finally convicted, I began to stand up. I stood, not in pride, but in faith and in character. I figured that if I got moving, God would direct my path.
I signed up with a temporary agency and amused myself by comparing my day’s wages earned by the sweat of my brow, with an hour’s wages from a previous time. So I worked as a third shift laborer for minimum wage, and since I came to Christ, I also have been without work. But through It all God has continued to sustain me. He has shown me the difference between my desires for things and real “need.”
I once had it all. But still I had nothing – without Him! Now I have nothing. Yet now I have it all – In Him! My favorite verses say what God has done for me. He has saved me! And He has shown me that my only real need is for Him!
Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”
But my joy and understanding begins in Philippians 4:11, and goes through to 4:13. So I have made these verses my Life Verses, because I don’t ever want to forget about what is really important; my relationship with God.
Not even the material things that He gives are to be coveted. Nor are they to be held too tightly. But it is His gift of eternal salvation through Jesus Christ which is of lasting importance.
And so, it is written and I have learned:
“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:11-13).
Brothers and sisters, I have had it both ways. I took the fullness of what the world offered and found it hollow; I gorged myself on it’s rich, sweet promises, and tasted the bitterness of its’ shallow and unfulfilled lies.
But now I have the riches of fellowship with God the Father, through Jesus Christ, God the Son, and in the Power of God the Holy Spirit. He supplies all my “needs.”
I Praise God for His Love, His Grace, and His Mercy on a poor sinner like me.
Once I was sure that I would never get any of it back; the money, the power, and such. And that concerned me, because I still wanted it. But then I began to wonder what I would do if I did have it back. And that thought scared me. So for a while, I actually feared getting it back. I reasoned that since I am weak (and that is not just a statement of false humility, this is true. I really am exceedingly weak!), I would just use it badly anyway. Then as God continued to show His Faithfulness and His sufficiency, I lost my desire to even have it back.
But guess what? As I truly gave it over to Him, and loosened the grip of my desire, He slowly began to give it back again. Not all of it, and not all at once. But He started out by getting me a job in computers again. (I won’t go into the details here, but how it came about was amazing.) The money isn’t much, but I don’t really need much. And I enjoy the work. And I actually work for a good man who is a Christian!
I am now working on a complete chronicle of God’s Mercy and His Faithfulness in my life. What you have read here, is only a tiny, tiny part of it. I continue to be surprised and truly amazed, as I think back on my life and see God’s hand. It begins before I was born, and then certainly before I came to Him, through Jesus Christ, and I know it will go on, throughout eternity.
Thanks for reading this, and for caring about Him, too!