My Story

During my early years I went to Church and Sunday school three times every Sunday. This was not because I was spiritual, but because we received prizes for attending regularly and like any child I loved receiving prizes. As young teenager I attended a weekly bible class and enjoyed the Billy Graham Crusades. However I now know that that I did not understand what Christianity was about even though I prayed every day.

When I was 16 I left my hometown of Bath and started in the big wide world of work. Work replaced everything and I soon had other attractions on Sunday and grew away from my church. I went from praying every day and going to church to only praying if I needed something and only went to church on special occasions. Work for the next thirty years was everything to me often working six days a week and over 70 hours a week, even the family at times were second.

This pattern continued until after a family crisis my wife Frances took our two young children Christie and Andrew to Christ Church. She was impressed with the welcoming atmosphere and how much the children were enjoying Sunday school. I could not fail to see the changes in the family. For the next year she tried to persuade me to go along but I had other things I wanted to do on Sundays especially going to the gym to improve my physical fitness. This was more important than my spiritual fitness.

In April 1999 my world fell apart, when, without notice after 30 years I was made redundant. Stephen Sizer, hearing about the number of redundancies, telephoned my wife to make sure I was not affected. Stephen, when told that I was, immediately e-mailed several of the church family asking for their prayers and also wrote a personal letter to me.

I was so touched by this I went to church the following Sunday and was amazed by the generosity and warmth shown by the congregation towards me. I then started to attend Church more regularly and soon realised what I had been missing in my life. I realised that Jesus was God, and he had died for my sins, taking the punishment I deserved for ignoring him for the last thirty years even though he had given me so much . I now had time for the family and especially my sons my life began to have a new meaning.

Now two years later I have a new life one a new career and the second a new life with Christ, this now includes working on the PCC and being a school governor at Christchurch where I represent the church. I know my journey has been a long one with a delay in the middle but I now feel more right with myself and although I am by no means perfect and often fall short, I am working hard at the excitement of turning to Christ. If you feel there is something missing in your life or you want to know more there is no time like now!!

Mike Goodman