01 February 2018 15:00
My name is Jay and I I’m 32 years old.
I grew up in Peterborough with my mum, dad and brother. I was not raised a Christian. I grew up a happy kid, full of life and energy but looking back as an adult I see how problematic it was. My mum was a victim of domestic violence, some of which I heard and witnessed. I never really wanted to be at home, so I would go out and play immediately after school and first thing in the morning on weekends until the sun went down. My mum did everything for me, worked full time, kept a clean house and tried to shelter me as much as possible. My dad was never violent towards me but never invested his time either so I grew up without really knowing what a father was other than a male figure in the house that you called dad.
My parents divorced when I was 12 and I moved to Hampshire with my mum who had remarried. My step dad was the first male role model that I had in my life and he completely transformed my life. He raised me in a way to be polite, respectful and to work hard for your goals. He was the first person that would say he was proud of me and I looked up to him and always wanted to make him proud. So much of what I am today is because of him. He was the closest thing to Jesus’ love I had ever experienced and gave me an idea of what a father actually is. My stepdad tragically died of a heart attack when I was 20 and as a result I went through a period in my life where I just felt empty. I had a car crash the year after which could have very easily been the end of my life. I felt like I had lost all purpose to life. I no longer had a father that loved me and was proud of me.
I met my wife who was raised a Catholic and gave me my first insight to what Christian life was like. I had always been an open minded person and found it inspirational how she was so kind and always saw the best in people. I had survived a car crash, had an amazing step dad that showed me endless love and started to believe there was more to life for me and that I was being saved for something. As a result I got baptised in 2014 and started my journey in having a relationship with Jesus.
My relationship with Jesus started in a disjointed way. I didn’t really know how to have a faith and found it hard to connect. However things were still happening in my life that made me feel God was watching over me. I started to go to a church in Fareham with my wife where we both started to grow in our faith together and met some amazing friends. Upon finding out the great news that we were having a child we looked for a more family orientated church and decided to attend Harbour. Straight away we were pulled in by the energy and welcoming spirit of the community. We both knew this was where we wanted to explore our faith. A few weeks after attending Harbour the Alpha coarse started and I decided to give it a go and try to get answers to the questions that I had about Jesus. The group was amazing and it was so refreshing to open up about my faith to others and to hear how other people were exploring their faith. Alpha gave me that starting point I was looking for, it gave me a platform to build on and to feel confident in growing my faith.
I can look back on my life now and see where God has worked miracles in my life and continues to guide me down the right path where I can enjoy and witness his love. I now have a father that will love me for ever and will never leave me. I now have a purpose to my life.
Now some people would look at the miracles in my life and call them coincidences, well to those I have this response,
A famous golfer once said “the more I practice, the luckier I get”. Well having found Jesus I can now say the more I seek his love the more coincidences I have happen to me.