When I couldn’t fix my family

  • by Andrew Goldin with Rich Atkinson
Photo by Mario Antonio Pena Zapatería/Flickr

I knew a lot of Bible stories as I grew up, but I never made the connection between all the knowledge and having a relationship with Christ.

I missed the main connection and that persisted through most of my life.

I also had a lot of anger problems as a kid. I was not living a Christ-centered life. I knew, “this is what you should and shouldn't do,” but whether I wanted to listen to it depended on my feelings.

In the summer of 2007, I went to a WyldLife Camp (Young Life) and I had the gospel presented to me in a relational way. For the first time it really made sense and I accepted Christ.

I was excited to go home and fix my family. I felt all the problems with my family were due to the fact that I had anger management. So I felt with Christ I could fix that.

But the night I got home, my parents sat me down and told me they were getting divorced.

That sent me on a downward tumble into depression and suicidal thoughts. I started living a two-faced life so that my friends wouldn’t know. I acted all excited and happy even into high school where I joined Young Life just to keep up appearances.

Andrew (second row, fourth from left) Photo courtesy Gregg Peters

Then a friend convinced me to go to summer camp with Young Life that summer, and I finally opened up about how I was really feeling and how life had been going the last few years.

Through talks with him about the gospel and Christ's power, I realized if I want to feel better and actually live life to its fullest I had to allow Christ to work in my life and not run away from Him. So that's when I re-dedicated my life to Christ.

It took a couple years for me to get a discipler to really walk with me and help me from my junior and senior year on. I am still really broken, still really not understanding things at times, but slowly walking that path.

That led me to college. I joined the Air Force ROTC at Ohio State University. And I got involved with Cru. We call it Real Life at Ohio State. I met a lot of great guys here who have continued to build me up in Christ and point me to Christ. And through that I felt a calling to minister to the military, and I felt I should start doing that now – in college.

This past summer I was at field training in downtown Texas and met with some people down there through Valor, the ROTC cadet and midshipman ministry of Cru on local college campuses. And I decided to start up Cru Valor and another study to partner with Officer Christian Fellowship. This year the Valor ministry at OSU had 3 women and 5 men involved.

Would you like to start a Valor ministry on your campus like Andrew?