My Story

I’m a relatively new believer in Christ. I had my conversion on August 28, 2007. It was a long time coming. And there were several things that led to it happening.

For a couple of years before that, I had a coworker who was a believer. He consistently witnessed to me, and prayed for me. Despite my constant rebuffing, he never gave up on me. All the way up until the time he left the company.

In June, 2007 there was a huge storm that dumped 5″ of rain on us in one hour. The water started to flood into the house. My wife was yelling at me to do something. I went outside and opened the gate to let some water through. We had a stockade fence. I went all around the house with no other idea of what to do. 

Eventually, I stopped and stood there in ankle-deep water with rain pouring on me. It was around 1:00 am or so. I looked up asked God for a little help. Suddenly a calm came over me. And He told me to check the drain line. I did, and it was blocked. Then the rain suddenly let up. Looking back, I think that whole event was my own little miracle. 

Then someone gave me a copy of “The Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren. On my second day of reading, I made the decision to believe, and accept, Jesus Christ is my Savior.

I was born with a handicap in 1964. It was Cerebral Palsy. Thankfully, it was a moderate case. It had no bearing on my intelligence, or speech. I was eventually able to walk, but it wasn’t normal.

I was subject to mocking, ridicule, and job discrimination. I wasn’t able to find a job until I was almost 19. There was no ADA back then. So the hiring managers could actually come out and tell you they weren’t hiring you because of your handicap. 

I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Business in 1987. I began a career in the underground utility construction industry. It spanned 29 years. And ended in 2016 due to health problems. I have been wheelchair-bound since 2014.

I knew that God had a purpose in allowing me to be brought low like that. He has a purpose in everything He does. For a long time, I asked Him to reveal to me what that purpose was. 

I found out at church one day. Someone who had known me long before all this started told me that I was an inspiration to him. He said that when he complained about not feeling well, or having some pain, he would think of me. He knew that if I could get through everything, then he could too.

I’ve also found out that being in a wheelchair can help me evangelize. Especially out in public with people I’ve never met. To a lot of people, having a stranger walk up to them can make them feel uncomfortable. Maybe even threatened a bit. 

But when a guy in a wheelchair comes up to them, they don’t seem to feel threatened at all. In places where people are seated, I can roll up to them and be at eye level. As opposed to standing over them. 

God was gracious to me when granting me spiritual gifts. Things like faith, wisdom, intelligence, knowledge, discernment, and teaching. 

The faith and discernment came after I was a believer. The others I had earlier. I let my gift for teaching go to waste when I was younger and healthier.

Because of the internet, I’m able to put all of my gifts to good use. It has allowed me to connect with people I would’ve not been able to otherwise.

Thank you for reading through all of this. And thank you for allowing me to share my story with you. I hope it will inspire or encourage you in some way.

Published by Stephen Bridgeman

Follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. Christian warrior. Believer in the divinely inspired inerrant Word of God in the Scriptures.

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