The Road to Success is Always Under Construction

At 21, most young people are just beginning life, but for me, my life almost
ended and was certainly changed forever.

In 1998, I was involved in a near fatal motorcycle accident that left me with
a 10% chance to live. By the grace of God, I survived. However, I had two
broken femurs, a broken arm, a broken jaw, massive head trauma and a
spinal cord injury that left me paralyzed from the waist down. The doctors
literally had to piece me back together to save my life. Being paralyzed is
a hard fact to face and not an easy one to swallow at the age of 21. As if
the physical injuries weren’t bad enough, mentally I began to break down.
I had to start my life over and learn how to live life in a wheelchair, but I was
determined to not let that stop me from being the best I can be. What doesn't
kill me only makes me stronger. It's just a roadblock to get through and with
my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ living in me nothing can stand in my way.
He is the true source of all my strength.

Along with furthering my education and starting a new and promising
career, I got involved in the growing sport of wheelchair bodybuilding in
2001. I began competing at the national level in 2002. Each year I was
getting bigger and better. Things were really starting to turn around. My
job was going great and I was actually enjoying my life even though I was
paralyzed. However, just when things were going so well, in October 2004
my dad lost his battle with cancer at the age of 50. I miss him very much but
at the same time I know he went home to be with the Lord where there is no
more pain and suffering and that brings me joy. A month later I was involved
in a serious car accident. I had to be air lifted to the trauma center and spent
the next 3 weeks in the ICU. I suffered multiple facial fractures, two broken
ankles, a broken right femur and fractured tibia and fibula. That accident
caused me to miss the 2005 Wheelchair Nationals bodybuilding competition.
I was in bad shape. With my jaw being wired shut for three weeks, my only
source of nutrition was liquids.

It was thanksgiving, I was in the hospital and my dinner was a protein
shake.I wasn’t too happy about that and wasn’t feeling too thankful for
anything at this point. After spending time with God in the word and in
prayer He opened up my eyes and showed me how much I did have to be
thankful for. I realized that there was a reason why I was still alive and that
He does have a plan and purpose for my life. My whole outlook on life was
changed from that point on. I surrendered my life to Him. My will is now His
will and my plans are now His plans. I trust in Him with all my heart even
though I don’t under-stand why things are the way they are. I know He is
in complete control. In all my ways I acknowledge Him and He directs my
paths. There is no better way to live than that.

A year later I was right back in the swing of things. I returned to work and
picked right back up where I left off. I bought my first house and I’m able to
live independently once again. I got back into the gym and started competing
again and continue to excel in the growing sport of wheelchair bodybuilding
today. That’s the favor of God!

When God takes something from your grasp, he's not punishing you but
merely opening your hands to receive something better! The will of God
will never take you where the grace of God will not protect you. If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it. Amen!

Winners never quit and quitters never win. Being able to overcome all the
obstacles in my life is a great victory already, and that's what it takes to not
only be a winner but a true champion. Right now my life is better than ever.
I never thought I would be able to say that. Even though I still can't walk in
the natural realm, I now walk by faith not by sight and that’s what gives me
the victory over this battle with my paralysis. I don’t let it stop me from being
all I can be. To walk again would just put the icing on the cake…and it will
happen. You’ve got to have faith. It can move mountains. Faith sees the
invisible, believes the incredible and receives the impossible!

All glory to God for all my achievements of course. None of this would be
possible without Him. Through Jesus Christ, all things are possible!

“I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me.”(Phil 4:13)