His name is Jesus, and he wants to be your best friend!


Iím sure my father and mother were happy on that cold winter day,
February 11, 1944; the day God filled my lungs with fresh clean air, and I
became a living creature, and began to breathe for the first time. I can
only visualize my grandfather and grandmother proudly announcing that
another third generation Christian Scientist was now part of the family
clan (two uncles and four aunts), and would begin my journey following
in the path and the family tradition that was rooted in this
metaphysical world, as described by the founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker
Eddy (more about that later). I was the third son of my fatherís blood
line; my younger brother would become the last of four sons and would
begin his life, three years later. My two other brothers were two and
four years older respectfully. From the hospital, I came home and
started my life living in a two bedroom house that was already being
renovated to accommodate a larger family.

World War II was intensifying, the atom bomb was being developed, the
depression was coming to an end, and the baby boom generation was just
one year away when I made my debut. I have no recollection and can only
imagine that first year, the challenges that my father and mother were
facing raising a four year old, two year old, and now a new born. There
must have been plenty to do to keep my mother busy, washing, cleaning,
cooking, and taking care of two toddlers and a baby. What I do remember
a few years later, and the tradition never stopped, we had three
complete meals a day and the evening course always included a meat, three
vegetables, bread and dessert; and nothing, and I mean nothing, on the
table would be left. If you wanted secondís, you had to eat and clean
your plate before your brother got the last helping of mash potatoes, or
the last piece of chicken! My mother was an unbelievable cook, and
could not only imitate a recipe after eating it only one time, but could
improve on it dramatically. While my mother spent every minute caring
for three infants, my father went to work every day before dawn, and
would return home after dark. The only family vehicle was a three wheeled
ďCushmanĒ motor scooter. At the age of two, I remember riding in a
three foot square box that was mounted on the front of this vehicle. I
would be standing beside my two older brothers, the wind blowing my hair
and into my eyes, laughing with joy, while struggling to see where we
were going; looking, just over the top of the metal box.

In 1947, my father began his entrepreneurial career and started his own
plumbing and heating business in Memphis, Tennessee. At the age of
three, I remember with vivid memory my father coming home driving a brand
new shiny truck, and watching a man paint my fatherís name and
telephone number on the door panel for his business. My mother came home from
the hospital, that same year, and had something they called my new baby
brother. As to my recollection, I had my own agenda, being very
independent, and was not particularly impressed of the new arrival. I also
remember after working all day, my father coming home and before going to
bed, would spend a little time on the shop and garage project under
construction in the back yard, and several room additions he was adding on
to our house. Thereís nothing my father couldnít build, fix or
accomplish, with his hands, probably due to the fact, he was the first born,
taken out of school in the eighth grade, to help raise his brothers and
sisters during the great depression. I guess you could say that my
father had to grow up very fast taking on that responsibility at the age of
fourteen. Can you imagine forfeiting your teenage years; missing out
on all the fun youíre supposed to have, raising younger brothers and
sisters?

My early childhood memories include running to the street with a nickel
in my hand when I heard the ice cream and popsicle man ringing their
bell, playing with our dog (he was black and his name was pepper) before
I painted him blue to match Paul Bunionís ďOld BlueĒ (a blue bull) that
I saw and thought was neat in the story book, chasing our big white
duck around the back yard and laughing when she made funny quacking sounds
from her relentless moving yellow bill (her name was Polly); avoiding
at all cost that crazy mean old goat that wanted to butt me when I was
not looking (he didnít have a name, he was just mean), and trying to
talk and carry on a conversation with our clipped wing, split tongue crow
who walked around the back yard and would sputter something that
sounded like ďmy name is smokyĒ. I was not a happy camper when my father
found out that I had poured five pounds of black pepper into the floor
furnace, and all the windows had to be opened during a snow storm! You
should have been there when my father looked at the handles on the wheel
barrel that had been cut off, modified, and shorten to fit my younger
brotherís arms because he could not push this contraption without a
shorter modification! It was amazing to see my older brother take a
running start off the top of the garage with an umbrella in hand, attempting
a soft landing that turn out to be a total disaster! That same brother
entertained us by performing many unsuccessful attempted stunts and
feats that to this day cannot be explained or duplicated! He had the
family car in a position that any stunt driver would be proud of, where two
wheels were on the ground, and the other two wheels were half way up on
the side of the same garage, where he attempted his earlier jump
flight! I suppose I got in the habit of waking up every morning before
daylight, so I wouldnít miss out on all the excitement that I knew was
going to follow. Yes, there was excitement in the air every day; I never
knew what was going to happen; I just waited long enoug

h for my oldest brother to get up, and shortly there after the show
would begin You can only imagine there was never a dull moment with four
boys growing up around this family.

School began in the fall of 1950, and I remember the first day of
school; there must have been more than twenty five strangers in our class;
but soon I met a friend named Boots. You have to like someone with a
name like that, and we became close friends. I remember in 1951, my
father brought home a big new box, and when he opened it up, the funny thing
had a glass window, and when you turn it on, you could see people
talking inside the box. Sometimes you could see Buffalo Bob, Howdy Doody,
the clown Clarabell, Roy Rogers, Trigger, Hopalong Cassidy, the Lone
Ranger mask man and his side kick, Tonto. I remember the day just
sitting, waiting, and watching that peacock on the screen with great
anticipation, when NBC aired the first episode of Superman. In 1952, we were
now moving up in society, and became a two car family with the addition
of a new car, a four door Plymouth. In 1956, I remember watching a
weird freak; that wore pink pants to school, and graduated with my first
cousins, being on the Ted Mac Show, and my cousins and I were sitting
around the floor laughing at him, his name was Elvis. In 1959, I was in
school class when it was announced that Buddy Holly had died in a plane
crash.

The year 1959 marked a major milestone in my life, (age 15). I
remember watching my two older brothers competing for the family car every
Friday and Saturday night, the light bulb came on, and I knew that in one
year, I also would have to compete and their was only two nights each
week end, and something had to change before I reached the age of 16.
Having entrepreneurial blood in my veins, I had saved enough money to
buy a 1950 black Ford sedan, ($200.00). Not being old enough to drive, I
let my older brother that was closest to me have access to my new car,
allowing my oldest brother to have exclusive access to the family car
every Friday and Saturday night. My brother and I were very close, and
we started an early morning paper route together; we would get up at
four oíclock every morning; he would drive me to my route, go and throw
his route, and come back when he finished his route. At sixteen I got my
driver license, and I continued to share my car with my brother. I met
and started to date my high school sweetheart, and best friend, in
1960, and we have enjoyed each other (most of the time) for more than forty
two years, (more about this later).

My fiancťe and future wife graduated the year before me, and was
working full time as a file clerk, while I was finishing my senior year at
high school. I continued to work my paper route, and we both saved
almost all our income in preparation for our future. I gave my car to my
brother when he got married; and in 1963, my fiancťe and I took enough
cash that we had saved together and bought a new Pontiac. This is the
year that I would face the most devastating time of my young life.
Shortly after my brotherís marriage, he became very ill. No one knew what
was wrong, but as we were taught in Christian Science; this error
(condition), as it was called, was only a false belief (a trial), was not
real, had no power, would disappear and be healed if oneís faith were
strong enough; just by knowing the truth (as taught by Mary Baker Eddy). I
had witness healing for almost eighteen years, and experienced healing
myself, and had no doubt that God was real, and would intervene if our
faith was strong enough. My brotherís condition got worse, and for the
first time in my life, a family member was hospitalized. This
situation had never come up before, in fact, a doctorís care had never been
necessary for any family member, for pain, sickness, or injury, before
this incident. Iíll never forget receiving a telephone call from my uncle
that night, while working at the Sky View Drive End Theater, the
message was very clear; go home, something is wrong!

Although my uncle never told me what had happened during that telephone
call, I felt pain and agony in my heart. Immediately leaving the drive
end, I remember driving home, with tears rolling down my face, knowing
that I had lost my brother, my best friend, and not sure how to handle
my emotions. While growing up, we all experience heart aches,
disappointments, and failures, but when you are faced with the death of your
closest friend, a brother, a loved one, someone that is very close, at
such an early age, you know that something is very wrong. I believe one
of the hardest things that I have been faced with in life, was the
morning I went alone to my brotherís empty apartment, to get his personal
belongings, his socks and shoes, his shirts, his underwear; something
was wrong! It would be many years later before God would rescue me from
Christian Science and the deception of Satan. My mother was never the
same after my brother died, she never forgave herself for the death of
her second son, and I remember the pain, torment, agony, and guilt she
went through for another ten years, before she died at the age of
forty-nine.

My brother left behind one of the kindest, sweetest and precious
widowís youíll ever meet, and a new born baby that would never know his
daddy. My nephew had more love in his heart and never had an enemy during
his life. He was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at an early age, and
was not supposed to live beyond his teen age years. He knew, loved,
and served the Lord with all his heart; rarely if ever complained about
his condition, and was inspirational to many friends while on this
earth. He graduated from high school, and went on to college. I remember
receiving a telephone call from his mother; telling me that he had moved
on to be with the Lord, and I felt in my heart again, something was
wrong. I remember my sister in law sharing with me how independent my
nephew was; and how honored I am that she allowed her son to full fill a
dream of living alone, independently in his own apartment, before he
passed away. If we all could have the heart and attitude that my nephew
had, what a great world this would be! I know he is no longer suffering,
and is enjoying Heaven, and canít wait to see him again, someday!

The year following my brotherís death, I graduated from high school,
and began working full time as a butcher in a grocery store. My fiancťe
and I continued to work and save for another two years, and in June of
1964, we were married. Our plan proved successful, and our savings
paid off, we were able to buy and begin to make notes on a small three
bedroom home, enjoy the luxury of having two cars, able to purchase with
cash our new furniture, and still had some savings in the bank. Life
seemed so good, (I thought), I joined a golf country club, began to
play golf, spend some time with photography and spending time in the dark
room, developing black and white pictures.

In 1966, my son was born, and became a fourth generation Christian
Scientist. I felt something inside was tugging at me, but didnít know what
it was. I felt something was missing in my life, so I began to isolate
myself from my family, trying to find happiness in something to
compensate for the hurt and pain inside. Selfishly, I spent every moment of
spare time playing golf, neglecting my wife and my son and their needs.
If it were not for God, and a very loving wife, my marriage would never
have lasted! These were some trying times, but the worse was just
beginning. Over the next few years, we continued to go to church, but the
Christian Science doctrine was becoming more cold and abstract. I
remember taking Richard Jr. to a Christian Science practitioner (someone
who was supposed to be able to heal), when he could hardly breathe. I
remember the look on the face of this woman; she was horrified when she
saw the condition of my son. Her faith was a far cry of what I thought
it should have been, and this was the first outward indication that
something was wrong with Christian Science.

The following day, we took our son to the doctor, and he was diagnosed
with asthma. He was given medication, and tests were run to determine
what he was allergic to. I knew that I was not practicing good
Christian Science doctrine, but wanted to do what was right for my son.
Something was still pulling at me on the inside. One day in 1969, while
working beside a co-worker at the grocery store, this individual shared
with me that he had started taking some computing programming courses.
Not knowing what was involved and what the opportunities were, I
inquired about this new field and became very interested.

After inquiring, I decided to start planning for a new career, and
enrolled with Electronic Computer Programming Institute. The curriculum
included three programming languages, as well as hands on experience
with all the equipment in a date processing environment. The training
would last about eighteen months, two nights a week. I was very committed
and spent extra time studying and preparing for my future. I completed
all my required assignments, and had an obsession to do more! I
thought this was the answer that would fill that void I was feeling. Iíll
never forget that Thursday night during class, the devastating news that
was announced. The director that was responsible to help graduates
find work informed the class that the market was saturated, and would be
impossible to find work. He said that more than six hundred graduates
were looking for work, and felt responsible to inform us of this
situation.

I could not believe what I was hearing, this must be a mistake. After
all, I had spent the last year and half preparing, going the extra
mile, and doing every thing I was supposed to and a little bit more, and
now this! I was not going to take this lying down, and decided to take
immediate action. The next day, Friday, I requested a day off from my
employer, and went down town, seeking employment in the computer
programming field. I remember talking to the lady in personnel department of
a savings and loan company, and she confirmed the bad news that I had
heard the night before; they were not taking any more applications at
that time. I told her that I understood, but only wanted to meet with the
programming manager a few minutes. This request was granted, and what
took place in the next few minutes had to be nothing more than divine
intervention.

The programming manager told me again that there were no opportunities
at this time for employment, but he would give me an opportunity to
introduce myself. Somehow in a few moments, I shared with him how much it
would mean to me to have an opportunity to become a computer
programmer, and how hard I had prepared for this new career. I told him that the
night before, our class was informed regarding the saturation of
programmers in the market, but knew in my heart that if someone would give me
a chance, that I could make a positive contribution. Before I said
another word, I found myself sitting in front of the Vice President of
operations. Although it was not in the budget, they were going to give me
an opportunity to become a computer programmer.

Only God knows the feeling I felt in my heart, over coming
insurmountable odds against my impossible situation, and yet He granted and gave me
a way out, even though I really didnít deserve it. I still was
neglecting my family responsibilities, selfishly seeking something that would
satisfy me. The focus was on me, not my wife or son. The only
explanation I can give why God was allowing me to be in favor, is that He
loves you no matter what, He knows your heart, and He will always make a
way that will lead you to Him. God knows that in time, everything has
its season, and God is very patient.

My new career was consuming me and taking all my time, and I found
myself working six, and sometimes seven days a week. Obviously, this was
not in the best interest for my wife and son. I knew my wife and son
loved me, but things were not right, and our marriage relationship was
suffering because of my ignorant and selfish attitude. I allowed it to
escalate to the point of possible separation, or maybe divorce. We had a
serious discussion, and wanted to try to change our relationship for
the better. Shortly thereafter, I accepted a better programming position
and we moved to Laurel, Md. in 1972. Accepting a new job, made it very
difficult to spend quality time with the family, and again, I found
myself again devoted to the wrong thing, my job and not my family. My
priorities were all out of order, and I had no foundation or reference to
know why. After all, my father worked all the time, my mother had the
responsibilities to raise the children, and I was just carrying on a
family tradition. Iím not making excuses for my behavior, but being
honest. It would be more than ten years later before God intervened and
changed my life.

My programming career came to an abrupt halt in 1981. For ten years, I
was blessed with substantial salary increases, and was earning more
that ten times as much as I was when I was a butcher at the grocery store.
I had become a vice president and Data Processing Manager of the
largest Savings and Loan in the country, a billion dollar corporation, and
had a large staff of programming personnel that included two programmers
that had advanced college degrees. The record showed that I had met
all budget requirements and company objectives ahead of schedule, year
after year. But, in 1981 a new personnel director, not knowing or caring
about my accomplishments, thought maybe I might be over valued and over
paid due to the fact, I didnít have a college degree. He had someone
else in mind that had a college degree, and I was fired!

The hurt and humiliation was excruciating, and something was wrong
again. Something was pulling at me, trying to get my attention. I went
into depression, and was not sure what to do. Nothing was going right in
my life, and I felt as if I had been betrayed. Something had to give!

Being totally devastated, I made the decision to leave the computer
field, change direction and pursue something completely different. I
didnít trust anyone, so I decided to go into business for myself. I
entered the insurance field with a large financial marketing company that
allows me to build my own company. My wife was perplexed to say the
least; actually she thought I had lost my mind! First a butcher, next a
computer nerd, and now an insurance agent? My wife reached down deep, and
somehow with Godís help, she made a decision that only true love,
dedication, and sacrifice could make. She supported me regardless of the
circumstances, and I will forever be grateful to her.

My new career did not come easy; I struggled with personal growth
challenges that were necessary to be successful in the field of marketing.
God knew what I needed, and put me in a position where if I was going
to be successful, I would have to change, and begin to focus on others
instead of myself. This revelation was not being revealed at the time,
but God knew what I needed! He also knew I was going to be a
challenge, but God is patient, and He gave my wife a triple portion, she needed
all the help she could get!

I worked very hard to build an organization, and it was not easy. God
was allowing me to face difficulties that would eventually change my
life completely. During this time, God brought people into my life,
(people that I hired for my new company), that would witness to me and
share the gospel of Jesus Christ. This was His plan from the beginning.
Finally, God was reaching out to me, a lost soul that was heading for
eternal hell. God was making a way for me, to become part of His family.
After being witnessed to several times, my wife and I were invited to
Christian Movie Theater that was showing a movie on the end times. The
Holy Sprit convicted me, and I accepted Christ as my personal Savior. I
denounced Christian Science, and began worshiping at a local church.
For almost a year, we were faithful with our church attendance, but my
business was not being blessed. I still felt something was wrong. I
went through a bitter dispute with one of the leaders of the organization,
and decided to leave.

Again, Iím facing a brick wall. In retrospect, I know now what God
wanted me to do. He wanted me to depend on Him and Him alone. I didnít
understand at the time, that God allows us to fail, experience pain,
agony, and disappointments, until we yield, and lean on Him for everything.
God allowed me with my stubborn nature to wander from one
disappointment to another, for another twelve years before He rescued me. He kept
my wife faithful, and she continued to pray for me and my soul.

I remember the day God tried to get my attention when He allowed my car
traveling at seventy miles per hour, to spin out of control and
perform a one eighty, and perfectly come to a safe stop during a hail storm.
The car was damaged, but not a scratch was on me. I know now, that God
sent His angels down to protect me. He wants my attention, but I was
still resisting. Then, He tried to get my attention by allowing the
following incident to occur. My boss was visiting one of his out of town
offices, and sent me to the airport to pick up a package that was in my
name. I went to the airport, picked the package up, and returned to
the office, only to find out that he had shipped illegal drugs across
state lines, and had me go a pick them up. I was livid, but this finally
got my attention. I left his organization, and found employment in the
financial and estate planning field.

God is so good, and will always make a way for you. I was headed for
an appointment with a potential client, and went early that day, because
I wasnít sure where it was. Being more than two hours early, I drove
up to the address only to find an elderly lady sitting in the yard,
drinking a cup of coffee. We made eye contact, and we waved to each other.
I stop and introduced myself, and explained to her that I was not sure
where she lived, and knew that our appointment was later that morning.
She advised me that since I was already there, to come on in and have a
cup of coffee. She introduced herself and told me she was a widow and
that her husband had passed away several years earlier. While we were
visiting she began talking about the Lord. The only way I can describe
what happen over the next several hours, has to be Divine intervention.
Something came over me that made me totally receptive to everything she
was sharing with me. It was if I had no control of the situation, and
someone else was directing the conversation. She finally invited me to
a Friday night district church service that evening, and without
hesitation, I accepted. I believe the Holy Spirit took control of my life,
and was intervening on my behalf. The reason I believe this was the
Holy Spirit, is the fact that I had been running and avoiding God for more
than ten years. My wife would ask me to go with her to church for
years, and I would declined every time.

I went to church that Friday Night, and my life has not been the same
since. I rededicated my life to the lord, was baptized again, and now
living for the lord faithfully. I will testify that each day brings an
opportunity to grow stronger in your walk with God, and sometimes we
fail, and fall short. But God never fails us, and He will always make a
way out of a negative situation, no matter how bad it may seem, if we
submit and yield to His correction.


It never dawned on me that I was isolating myself, looking for pleasure
that would cover up the hurt that was on the inside of me. Something
was wrong, and I didnít know what it was. It is only now, almost forty
years later, that I can reflect back, and see how hurt I must have
been; how lost I was; that was leading to my selfish and destructive ways.
I didnít have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Thatís what
was wrong! Today, I do have a personal relationship with Jesus, and Iím
sorry for many things that I have been guilty of, and thank God for
forgiving me of all my sins. Jesus has shown me the only way to over come
past transgressions, and has given me a new life to enjoy with my
loving spouse, who never gave up on me, and endured more than anyone should
have to. I will always be indebted, and thank God for allowing us to
become husband and wife.

I pray right now for the person that is reading this personal
testimony; if something feels wrong or if you know someone who is hurting, go
and share with them; that there is a Savior that can and will take their
pain and agony away, and give them joy in their heart. His name is
Jesus, and he wants to be your best friend! He will take what ever is
wrong, and make it right! Thank God for the men and women that were bold
enough to take the time and share with me the gospel of Jesus Christ!
Most of all, thank God for sending His Son that took the sins of the
world upon Himself, which include all my sins, and paid the price for me,
so I can enjoy eternal life forever! This is a free gift, and you can
do nothing to earn it, all you need to do is ask Jesus to come into
your heart, and turn away from your sins.


Testimony submitted to the Breadsite. To submit yours click here.