The One Thing That Had the Greatest Impact on My Life

I didn’t know it at the time, but in January of 1981 my life changed forever. I was three years old and my parent’s marriage was entering its fifth year. Friction had turned into fire, and it was clear that my parent’s marriage was in trouble. My dad knew he needed a change in his life, and that change came in the form of Christianity.

1981-09-20 Howard (24) George (39) Sugar Creek Baptized
September 1981: Dad (24) baptized by Pastor George (39)
Overnight, my dad stopped drinking, smoking, cussing, and everything else that resembled his old life. My mom followed suit a week later—after realizing how much she liked the changes she saw in her husband.

1981-09-20 Rhonda (25) George (39) Sugar Creek Baptized
September 1981: Mom (25) baptized by Pastor George (39)
A coworker soon told my dad about a small church in the area that his son had been attending. He thought my dad and mom would fit right in, and he was right. Christ Fellowship—which would later be known as Calvary Chapel—was made up of a congregation of about 30 people who met weekly at Littleville, a local preschool. They brought their own lawn chairs and could often be found wearing t-shirts, cutoff blue jeans, and flip-flops.

Pastor George and his congregation welcomed my parents and me with open arms. In addition to being our new circle of friends, the church became a surrogate family. This was the beginning of a new life for all of us.

There are many things that have a great impact on our lives: school, job, friends, parents, children, partners, etc. Belief, however, has the greatest impact of all. Your belief creates your worldview.

What is your worldview? Does your worldview show compassion? Does it keep you curious? Does it motivate you to take action? If not, you may want to take another look at it.


This week, find something that you know little or nothing about and immerse yourself in it—this works best if you can do it in person. If you don’t understand the fascination with bird-watching, join your local Audubon Society and see what it’s all about. Not sure what possesses a person to dress up as one of their favorite fictional characters? Attend a comic book convention in your area. Read books and watch documentaries about people, groups, and places you know little or nothing about.

Have compassion.

Stay curious.

Take action.

Expand your horizons.


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