My Spiritual Journey

My adult life started out on the “fast track” in finding my business position in society. Strong willed and very competitive I tried to accomplish everything relaying on my own power and understanding. I was self-centered, arrogant and full of pride, complimented by a legalistic attitude and critical spirit. I made all decisions, important or not, and seldom consulted my peers at work or my family at home. It basically was my way or… the Highway.

Focused on my career, I was determined to be the best, to make it to the top in the corporate world, where I would surely find the time to relax and enjoy the fruits of my labor. If the company asked for a transfer overseas, I was ready to move immediately. When the job required traveling, I was on the airplane when the cleaning crew was still on board.

I was convinced that the success of my business efforts would bring everything else in my life together, such as happiness, contentment, and most importantly, freedom to do whatever was pleasing to me at any given time. I quickly achieved the American dream: a loving and beautiful wife, two healthy sons, a nice home in an affluent neighborhood, two cars, a good paying job, summer and winter vacations, and so on.

I was so busy running the company that I did not devote much time to my wife and sons and my marriage commitment had taken a back seat to the business and travel responsibilities. What originally began as a partnership of love deteriorated to a simple living arrangement between the two of us, heading towards divorce. Years of alienation and neglect drove the kids away to the point where I lost their love and respect. My priorities were work, work, and more work, then came running, golf and fishing, and finally, if there was any time left, my family.

Then in 1986, the company I managed for six years was acquired through a corporate takeover, and they didn’t need an international guy like me anymore. I was crushed, devastated, confused and… jobless. Although the trappings of success kept paying the bills for a while, my life had overnight become a nightmare rather than the American dream.

I began to search for answers and peace and realized that something was missing. My insides were hurting and empty. The joy of what I was doing became a burden, compounded by nagging guilt. Wounded and uncertain of my future, but armed with a workaholic attitude, I simply redoubled my efforts by starting my own commodity export trading company and soon found myself back in the same vicious cycle.

In October of 1992 some friends of ours invited us to a Couples Bible discussion group. I really didn’t want to go but my wife insisted, and I finally went along reluctantly. There I heard for the very first time the need to be “reborn”. At first it didn’t make any sense. Surely, at the ripe age of 47 I could not be born again.

The next time we played golf I asked my friend what he meant by being “reborn?” He pulled his pocket Bible out on the tee box and showed me John 3:3 which reads: “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” My friend went on to explain what it meant in practical terms and that every one of us is separated from a perfect and holy God because of our imperfection and sinfulness.

After understanding that God loved me so much that He sent His only Son to die for my sins, it was time for me to let Him direct and guide my life.

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