Republican presidential hopeful Ben Carson recently shared his dramatic story of conversion and revealed why he believes America is in need of "God's healing hands" more than ever before.
Speaking at LifePoint Assembly of God in Osceola, Iowa, on Sunday, Dr. Carson told the congregation that he grew extreme poverty in Detroit, Michigan, and was filled with anger and resentment, believing he would die at a young age. However, his life was completely changed after spending three hours locked in a bathroom one day, reading the book of Proverbs.
"When I came out, my temper was gone and I've never had a problem since," The Des Moines Register quoted the retired neurosurgeon as saying.
In addition to Proverbs, Dr. Carson revealed that two other important books deeply influenced his life: Up from Slavery, an autobiography of Booker T. Washington, and the account of Joseph's life in the Old Testament in the Bible.
"That really spoke volumes to my heart. Where you end up has a lot to do with the attitude you adopt in your life," he told the congregation.
Because he so strongly believes in the healing power of the Gospel, the Gifted Hands author said he is confident the United States needs a spiritual revival more than ever before.
"I don't think there's anybody who can deny that our land right now is in need of God's healing hands," he stated, quoting 2 Chronicles 7:14, which reads, "If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from Heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land."
Before the presidential hopeful spoke, church Pastor Chuck DeVos introduced him, stating, "Dr. Carson is not here to campaign today. We're not saying go vote for Dr. Carson. We're saying here's a man who walks humbly before his God, who has an incredible message not only for us but for our country."
Dr. Carson, who is the only African-American Republican presidential candidate and was a featured speaker at the official National Day of Prayer gathering in Washington, D.C., often mixes his politics with his Christian testimony.
Before taking to the stage last week for the Republican presidential debate on Fox News, the former neurosurgeon publicly prayed for the Lord's guidance over his words.
"May the Lord guide my words tonight, let His wisdom be my thoughts," he wrote on his official Facebook page.
Dr. Carson's faith-driven views on hot-button political issues have made him unpopular in the secular media; in February, he hit back at the Southern Poverty Law Center, which has included him in its "Extremist Files" because of his Biblical views regarding marriage and abortion.
"It is important for us to once again advocate true tolerance," he said in a statement at the time. "That means being respectful of those with whom we disagree and allowing people to live according to their values without harassment."
Further, said Dr. Carson, the nation is approaching the stage where "wrong is called right" at a time "when embracing traditional Christian values is equated to hatred" and "it is nothing but projectionist when some groups label those who disagree with them as haters."
"Today the forces of political correctness would expel God from every public sphere in American life, and the hearts and minds of every man, woman, and child in America are up for grabs in this cataclysmic battle between the lovers of men and the lovers of God," he explained his his 2012 book America the Beautiful. "I believe it is time for us to stand up and be counted."