I was raised Catholic, and I grew up loving God with all my heart. I felt such a great euphoria and sense of wholeness in communion with God—you’d never know how troubled my home life was. My parents were alcoholics, and my brother was a neo-Nazi.
In 4th grade, I transferred to a public school, stopped going to church, and forgot about prayer. I became suicidally depressed, and I blamed my suffering on God. I convinced myself that He wasn’t real, and I lived to defy the very concept of Him.
I discovered alcohol in 8th grade, and it made me once again feel euphoric, connected and loved. I became addicted, and by the time I was 28, my drinking was killing me. Desperate to survive, I joined a program for recovering alcoholics, and an old-timer told me, “The only thing standing between an alcoholic and their next drink is God. You’d better get your heart right with Him if you want to live.”
With heavy reluctance, I began to pray again, and God began to thaw my hardened heart. It became clear to me that my relationship with God had always been the most important relationship in my life. When I embraced God, He enveloped me in the light of His love. When I pushed Him away, I disappeared into darkness.
I joined C3 Brooklyn, began attending dinner parties, and started reading The Word. When Canon J. John spoke to our congregation, he asked, “Do you choose Jesus Christ to be your own personal Lord and savior?” I said yes, and I saw a soft, glowing orange light swirl through my heart. Ever since, I’ve felt noticeably lighter and more at ease, and I’ve been understanding The Word on a deeper level.
I know from firsthand experience that a life of selfish pleasure leads to death. I choose life, and that’s why God is paramount to me today.