I grew up in a difficult home having two brothers with disabilities. My mom and dad divorced when I was young, and my mom was an alcoholic. When I was nine years old she was taken away from my brothers and I due to her addiction.
During this painful time, I hated God and my family. I couldn’t understand why a good God would allow bad things to happen to “good” people. When I looked around the neighborhood and saw selfish and greedy peers whose lives were so easy, I couldn’t understand why God would allow them to be so happy. It made me mad.
I had gone to church as a child and knew many of the Bible stories but I had not been born-again. Thankfully, before my great-grandmother went to be with the Lord, she gave me a bible for my birthday and I began to read it daily. There was something about this Book that I could not put down.
At some point before my freshman year in high school I came to a very startling realization: I understood that I was sinful! For the first time in my life, I saw myself in the mirror of God’s Law and realized I was completely guilty before a holy God, and that I had nothing good to offer Him. I had turned my back on the very One who gave me life. I had violated every one of His laws and I knew in that moment that no amount of good works would erase my sin against Him. I was in great danger of falling under His wrath.
I was overjoyed to hear and understand the Good News of what God did for sinners – that God Himself became a man, Jesus Christ, and lived a perfect life in our place; that He died a criminal’s death, though He was completely sinless, to pay for our sins with His own blood that was shed on the cross. He was buried and three days later rose from the dead defeating death and Hell. I learned that if I would repent of my sin and place my trust in Jesus Christ alone for my salvation, God would forgive me of all my sins and grant me the gift of everlasting life!
I cried out to God for His mercy with a broken heart and He saved me! He cleansed me from my all sin. Immediately I had a deep love for my family and for other people. I had an incredible hunger for God’s Word and prayer. I delighted in escaping into the Nevada deserts and fields to pray and grow closer to my Redeemer.
A few years later I moved to Florida to begin Christian college. It was while I was in college that God birthed within me a deep brokenness for the lost.
One afternoon in college, I realized that outside of the four walls of my campus there are literally thousands of people who do not know Jesus and who are headed straight for Hell. Sadly, I wasn’t saying anything to any of them. I always thought that evangelism was a gift that God only gave to certain people, but the more I read the Word, the more I realized that this was merely an excuse to not obey the Lord in the Great Commission. The “gift” is God’s Son and those who have His Son are now called to share Him with the world! We are all commanded to go into the world and preach the Gospel to all creation. We are Christ’s ambassadors.
What a privilege!
God has been very gracious to me and has blessed me with an amazing, beautiful wife, Malissa, and a precious little boy named Simon. We also have a precious daughter, Roary, who went to home to be with the Lord a day before she was born.
The Lord is our fortress.