God works all things for good for those who love Him. (Romans 8:28)
I was very fortunate growing up to have had a mother and father who loved me and my sisters very much and did all that they could to prepare us for the lives we would lead. My mother’s family was strongly Catholic, while my dad was a non-practicing Protestant. In those days, the Catholic Church would not marry a Catholic with a non-Catholic in the church proper. So my parents got married in the church vestibule. In addition, they both had to agree to raise any children they might as Catholics. So, I grew up in the Catholic Church. I was an altar boy and a part of the CYC (Catholic Youth Council). I was baptized, had my First Communion, and was confirmed. I then attended Holy Cross, a Catholic college run by Jesuit order. While in high school, I had been exposed to other religious denominations, but never thought much about it. It all seemed the same to me. But by this time, I had a girl friend who was a strong believer who attended an Assembly of God Church. I was also painting houses with her brother and brother-in-law. I began to see some real differences in how they lived their lives-believing that God loved them personally and wanted bless their lives. Over time, I came to believe the same. So I became one of two non-Catholics attending Holy Cross (me and one Jewish Guy). I began to realize that God had a definite plan for my life and that He was going to help follow that plan. And while it was never easy attending a school I couldn’t really afford or being away from the girl I would eventually marry, I knew that I loved God and that He loved. And, while I might not be able to see the beginning from the end, He always had everything under control.