Growing up I always thought I would be that Christian that would do all of the right things. I promised myself I would not have sex until I was married, I would never drink or smoke and if I had gotten someone pregnant I would never leave them. Well to be honest I have broken all but one of those promises. I mean I have smoked one time and that was a cigar on my wedding day when I married Andrea. I mean it was like two puffs and I was done. That is neither here or there. I am about to get deep into my life testimony. Much of it is written to help young people but anyone can gain from this chapter. So I am going to take you down my spiritual journey starting from my high school days.
I was born and raised as a Christian in Yukon, Oklahoma. I was a Christian all of my life. Growing up I was raised by my mom, my Aunt Connie and my grandmother. Growing up I really didn’t know my dad until my junior year in high school. I had a few friends but the friends I had were very close to me. Out of all of them to this day only one is still my best friend and he has a chapter in this book dedicated to his rants. He was there for me through so much in my life. So when I speak of Jason in this chapter you will know who he is.
My senior year my teacher asked the class to write down what they wanted to do after high school. Many most of them wrote the normal answer which was to attend a college of some sort. I only had one dream and that was to be a DJ at the local radio station in Oklahoma City which was KOKF 91FM. Around the same time, Jason invited me to attend youth group on Wednesday nights at Oneighty Youth at what was then Yukon First Assembly of God. My mom and I stopped going to school when I was in elementary due to some stupid power struggles with the elders of the church changing the locks on the door so the pastor could not get in.
You see that church wanted the pastor to only preach what they wanted him to. Pastors should have the right to preach on whatever topic the spirit speaks. So I really didn’t want to go to church but Jason really made an impact in my life during that time. I am sure he doesn’t even know that because he always thanks me for being the spiritual influence in his life. Sorry for the bunny trail and now back to the subject of Oneighty Youth.
The first service I went to was amazing. I walked into the building where my ministry was going to start but I didn’t know that at the time. There I got to know the associate youth pastor which was a musician and worked concerts on the side. There I learned how to run the sound board and how to be a servant. Because of this youth pastor I was able to work various Christian concerts and connected with local artists and got to know people in the business.
Right before I graduated high school I went to a volunteer staff interview for KOKF 91Fm. Long story short I was picked to be the new temp there. I was stoked. There I did a lot of office work and assisted the radio DJs and eventually learned how to run the board. I will never forget the first time I spoke on air. All I was doing was giving snow closings for local schools. As soon as I hit the on air vocal channel on the board my adrenaline rushed like it never had before. I gave the opening call letters and then gave the school closings. Then I signed off and played more music. As soon as I turned off the vocal channel I fell to my knees because they were shaking so much. The program director said I did a great job and we both laughed.
About a year later I was given a chance of a lifetime. I was given my own radio show. My first night was on my birthday which is October 9th. I remember it because the band Bride came to town and I was able to go see them for free since I worked for the radio station. That was one of the coolest perks about the job was going to almost any Christian show for free and sometimes even getting back stage access which most of the time meant hanging with the artists. This was not the most important part of being a DJ at a Christian radio station. The best experience I have ever had in ministry was being a DJ overnights because I was able to talk to the people that were dealing with issues. I was able to pray with people and help them to make positive decisions. Sometimes just talking to people makes them feel better about whatever they are going through.
Then my dream started to fall apart. I started to feel that God was going to use me in a whole new way. I had always heard people talk about how a person that became a Christian could remember the time they gave themselves to God and accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord. I got to thinking that I had never really had that experience. My spirit was strong like it knew something was about to change. Well a week later I was let go from the radio station due to some spiritual issues and lack of communication. When the station hired a new program manager they did not tell me things were going to change.
I had two great guys that had their own ministry on my show every Monday night. We would talk about events and they would pray for people in the studio. Well no one told me I could not have them on my show without permission. This was news to me. So somewhere in the mix of shows one of them said something out of place about TBN and some people heard this and reported it. So I was suspended for a week and then was let go from the station. I was told that I was rebelling against God and the radio station through my actions. I was only 21 at the time so all of this really hit me like a ton of bricks.
This is where my testimony starts to go south. I hope and pray that young people will learn from what I have gone through. I went looking for something to fill the void of not being there. I know now that I had taken it lightly and was acting big headed even when I thought otherwise. Jason was living with me at the time and he tried to help me through it but I would not let him. I went looking for women online. I had dated a few then I learned why the Bible says do not be unequally yoked. I started dating someone that was not a Christian thinking I could change her thoughts on God. How could I when I was a mess? Yeah I failed at that because I was doing all the work and no room for God.
At that time I really thought I loved this girl. Her friend told me that she would only stay with me if I had sex with her. I had a battle with myself debating if I should or should not have sex with her. I tried to play the gentlemen and I did not have sex with her the first few times we spent the night. It worked at first and she seemed stoked that I didn’t force it. I talked to Jason about it a few times and he tried to warn me not to. I did it anyway. Then with her I started drinking. She didn’t drink beer much and she loved Sweet Apple Pucker. It was good when mixed with Mountain Dew which Dew is my favorite drink.
Then a few months later we found out we were having a baby. Oh my God what had I done? I was not married and I was going to be a father. I didn’t know what my mother would think. She was so excited. After our son was born we started having a lot of issues which lead to fights that became so heated that she would start to hit me because she was so upset. We came to a point where I lost my Job and went back home to tell her and we had the fight to end all fights. So I left and told here good bye. I went back to visit my son a few times after that.
I wish I could tell you that this was where I decided come running back to God and live for Him and all that jazz. Nope. I thought dating a Baptist preacher’s kid would solve all my issues. We started out great. We went to her dad’s church a few times and she went to a few churches I was a part of too. Then we found out we were having a baby. We both were shocked. I told my mom and she was once again excited. When she found out it was a girl I had never seen my mother so happy. So we decided to get married. Then a few months before my daughter CheyAnna was born my life basically came to an end.
My mom had been in and out of the hospital for a few years. Every time she had a health issue she attacked it full force. Well I was working at a 7 11 at the time and It was almost time for me to get off. My wife and uncle at the time came to the store and told me I needed to leave right then. So I did and we rushed to the hospital. My mother was on life support and it came to the point where it was no longer doing its job. The time had come to make a decision to keep her on it or let her go.
We called family and close friends to come to the hospital. Once they were all there. We were all in the same room. The doctor spoke to all of us and told us what had been going on. He said it was time to make the decision. My Aunt and dad both knew what my mom wanted to do. So we decided to take her off the life support. I will never forget that moment in that room. It felt like the end of the world. Everything went to black. After the doctor said she was gone and he left I just fell on top of my mother and began to cry like I had never cried before. The room was pitch black and I felt countless hands on my back and I could hear crying all over the room.
Life from that point has been like living in another life. Everything feels and tastes different. It is like you have a new life yet you can remember the memories of your past life. Well after dealing with the loss of my mother a year later we had a still born baby. After dealing with that grief and the loss of both of them I had become a dull and numb person. I didn’t care much about life to the point where we broke off our marriage. We separated and I moved in with a friend. I saw my daughter when I could because her and her mother moved 3 hours away.
I want to say that I mean no disrespect to the ladies that I have spoken of thus far. I have not mentioned their names out of respect. It takes two to tango and I was just as much at fault as they were. Things just did not work out. Now we get to 2006 where I start talking to Andrea. I met her on an AOL music chat line a few months before my ex-wife and I parted ways. Then she found me on Myspace once I had moved in with my friend Nick. We talked and a few months later I took a vacation to fly to Portland, Oregon to meet Andrea. Well we got to talking and a month later I moved out there to start a new life. I needed to get away. I needed a chance to restart my life.
Since I moved to Oregon I have learned a lot about people, music and myself. I have become a people person and very down to earth. I have broken my shyness and have way more self-esteem. Andrea and I have been together since 2006 and we have been married since 2009. We have been though a lot of trials and tribulations but we have overcome them all. Since 2011 we have been members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The experience of becoming a convert will be documented in various chapters to come. Thanks you for taking the time to read my spiritual journey thus far. I hope that you will learn things from what I have done. Never take God for granted if you believe in Him.
Having sex with someone is not a good way to keep them in your life. If that is the reason then you need to find more reasons or another person to date. Drinking is also something you should not do a lot of. If you are going to drink please be alert about how many you have. I have been drunk one time and I cannot understand how people can get drunk and then feel that they can do anything let alone drive a car. Be aware of what the spirit tells you. If it does not feel right then chances are it is not.