I grew up without God. Instead, I served the god of sports. I ate, drank, lived, and slept sports. I also sinned in sexual promiscuity and immorality, along with being a leader in getting myself and others intoxicated with beer and whiskey, lying, cursing, profanity, and taking the name of the Lord in vain, and so on and so forth.
But, in my early twenties, after I graduated from college, I became disappointed with all of the trouble and difficulties that these things were causing me and my friends. So, I called out to God for help. At the same time, somehow God worked to have my mother put in my luggage a pocket red New Testament. This angered me, but she said my name was in it, and that I must have got it at a vacation Bible School. This satisfied me, for I remember attending a brief one during a certain summer, and on the inside back cover I saw my name "Patrick".
Now, at this time also, after college, I was interested in reading books that I had never read, for now I had time to do so. And so I was open to reading the N.T. As I read about Christ, and also the proverbs (for the book of proverbs and psalms were at the beginning of this N.T.), I started to realize what an unholy young man I had been. I also wished I would have known about these wise truths in proverbs and the gospel when I was young.
In the gospel, I discovered that Christ was a valiant man, and so I immediately attached myself to Him, and began to vigorously defend Him, even among my ungodly friends. I also began to defend Him publicly. For example, when I began to learn to speak in public, my first speech at Toastmasters was "Five Bones to Pick with Catholics". Well, this did not go over well with one of the members of the group, since he was Catholic. Yet others wanted to discuss it further.
So, along the way, by God's choosing, He had begun to purge me of my sins, help me become an evangelist, husband, father, a publisher, home schooling father, and more.