I was raised in a family that did not go to church. My dad was an alcoholic and my mom was a stay-at-home mom until the divorce. I am the oldest of 5 kids – 3 brothers and 1 sister. I started going to church when my best friend invited me. I really only continued because of the youth activities and the pretty girls. I was hearing the gospel but I wasn’t paying much attention to it. As I got older (into high school) I actually felt the call of God on my life but I refused to submit to Him at that time.
When I went to college I stopped going to church for various reasons…mostly because I was lazy and I got caught up in the fraternity / college life. Church was out of site and out of mind. I was also influenced by the liberal leanings of the college setting. My last semester of college I met my wife. She was a regular church attender and had a very positive influence on me…after a little while. We attended the church that she grew up in and God began to really convict me of my need for Him. The pastor was very sensitive to my situation as God was dealing with me and did not push me at all. If he had pushed I would have used it as an excuse to run from God again. He would come by the house and just ask me if I was ready to talk and tell me that he would be ready to talk to me when I was ready. During this time, my wife and I stopped attending that church and were searching for another one.
On the day I was saved ( March 6, 1995, I was 26 years old) I was going out to run some errands. At the time I worked second shift (4pm – 12am) and I had all morning and early afternoon free. We lived about 2 blocks from the church we had attended and I had to drive by it on my errands. As I drove by the church I saw that the pastor was at the church. I remember thinking to myself “if he is still there when I come back through I will stop and get saved”. God had other plans. I had not driven 2 blocks and it was as if the Holy Spirit was in the truck with me. He told me (not in audible words) that this was the last time the I was going to have an opportunity to submit to Jesus as my Lord. If I refused this time He would never again call on me. God’s presence was so strong that I had to turn around. By the time I got back to the church I was crying so hard that I don’t know how the pastor understood anything I was saying. Jesus came into my life that day and I have never been the same.