Valentines Day Changed My Life

Posted: February 12, 2010 in Life Change, My Faith

I was fortunate enough to grow up in a Christian home. I’m sure there have been many times I have taken that for granted, but the older I get the more I can appreciate it. From the beginning I was in church. There has never been a time in my life that I was not involved in church somewhere. On February 14, 1982 I was 4. Actually 4 and a half. haha I don’t remember anything when I was that age except for one event. My Sunday school teacher at the time was an amazing woman named Rita Stafford. She’s been a family friend my entire life and played a huge role in my life specifically on this day.

It started just like any other Sunday. We went to church and I played with the toys in the preschool room and probably pulled a few girls pony tails in the process. I don’t remember much about this day except when Rita shared the gospel in a way like I never heard, and I could feel a need like I have never felt it before. As young as I was, I realized that church was more than a place to play, it now had a meaning and I saw it for the first time. I knew that not only did Jesus die for the rest of the church, but he died for me. I remember specifically when Rita asked me if I wanted to pray and I knew that not only I wanted to, but needed to. I can still picture it in my mind.

A few years later looking back, I’m not sure if I understood the whole realm of the gospel so I made sure in my parents bedroom at eleven years old. I haven’t looked back since. I’m not sure when I officially “got it” so to speak but February 14th will always hold a special place in my heart, not because of romantic love, but because of the sacrificial love of my Savior. 27 years later it still gets to me, and I remember it like it was yesterday.

Rita lost her long time battle with cancer a few weeks ago and one day I will get to see her again and thank her for her impact she had in my life as a young boy. She was an amazing woman. My sister blogged about her here in fact. Her joy was overflowing. Happy Valentines Day.

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