Why am I here? This is the question I asked myself as I was growing up. I knew I was missing the answer. I felt like I was always trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, nothing fit. I was born into a good family. I have two older siblings, a brother, and a sister. I always felt like I was being held back. I was a rebel. I craved adventure and excitement. Before I was even 18, I got in trouble at school because I was hanging out with the wrong crowd. I was partying and experimenting with drugs and alcohol. One day, my friends and I stole some cases of beer from a beer delivery truck and we thought that was so fun. Next time, we stole beer from a store and a policeman started chasing my friend’s ’72 Camaro. We reached speeds of over 100 mph. We outran the policeman until someone in the neighborhood called and told the police where we were hiding. So we got caught and taken to jail. I was only 17, so I got released with no charges. I kept on this destructive course into a life of crime. I bought a ’69 Charger and did a lot of street racing with it. I had the reputation of having the fastest car in the south county. One day, it broke down in San Jose. While I was getting parts, a questionable friend, towed my car and tried to hide it. He was trying to steal my car. When I realized what he was doing I got mad. I went to find him and I had a 357 revolver with me. I was going to let him know that I wasn’t playing games. I was on foot, so it was taking a long time to get across town. As I was walking by an open garage, I noticed a bicycle and I grabbed it. The owner of the bike ran out and tackled me. He and his son struggled to hold me until the police came, meanwhile the shells for the revolver were falling out of my jacket. When the policeman got arrived he noticed the shells and saw me reaching to keep the gun from falling out of my jacket. I’m lucky that he didn’t shoot me. I was 18, so I was arrested and booked into the county jail. I was a lost individual. I had other charges hanging over my head as I went through court, and it looked like I was headed to Calif Youth Authority. We worked out a plea bargain and I was probated to a drug rehab program. I went to the Genesis House in Seaside for one year. The other people in the rehab program were a terrible influence on me. They were teaching me more about drugs and crime. I began commercial fishing and was out on the ocean a lot. One of the crew members would often talk about God and it got me thinking. The struggle between good and evil continued and my life was falling apart. I had an accident on the boat and cut my arm badly damaging my radial nerve. So I was off work, while it healed. I was sick and tired of living a sinful and selfish life. One day I saw a Christian program called the 700 Club. I heard about people being transformed and living new lives. After a weekend of partying, I found a gospel tract in a phone booth (before cell phones). It answered some of the questions that I had, and to this day I still remember the words. It said “ Life is short, Death is sure, Sin is the cause, Christ is the cure” Each title was backed by scriptures. I realized that my life could only change with Christ’s help. The battle for my soul intensified. I was weighed down with guilt and shame. I began to have suicidal thoughts and I wanted to be alone. I didn’t want to go back to the drug-infested place where I was living, so I checked into a hotel. I found a Gideon Bible in the nightstand. In the front of the Bible, there were scriptures listed about forgiveness. I knew I needed to open up my heart to Jesus. Revelation 3:20 says that He stands at the door of our heart and knocks. If any man hears his voice and opens the door, He will come in. Jesus wasn’t going to force his way into my life, I had to open up the door. I called upon the name of the Lord, and he gave me the power to change. I heard about a Teen Challenge program in Salinas called Youth for Truth. I went and met with them. They offered to help me move out of the place where I was living. I moved into a home with other Christian men and was part of a discipleship program. We had a strict schedule of prayer, bible study, and helping others. This was the first time in my life that I was giving and helping people instead of living for myself. I found that – Living to Give and Giving to Live – gave me a purpose for living. As I am writing this testimony, it is difficult for me to count how many missions and humanitarian projects I have been involved in. It has been a wonderful adventure! I got married to my wife Aimee in 1988. We have 4 wonderful kids, Rebekah, Tim, Jessica, and Viktoria. I am so thankful for God’s goodness in my life!

Scroll to Top