About 2 years ago, my oldest son, Jacob, became friends with a young man named Graham. Jacob had joined up with a Navigators group at a local community college here in Redding, CA. During that time, Jacob invited Graham to become a part of our life group. From the time of his first few visits, Graham seemed to consider himself part of our life group family and attended regularly.
Graham grew up in the Austin, Texas area. His parents were devoted Christians, who served the Lord faithfully in their lives and through the church. They were thrilled when their first child, Graham was born, but that birth brought many challenges. Graham was born with an autism spectrum disorder. Most parents, during that time, had little to no idea what this disorder meant or how to help their children manage their life and situation. Graham was a challenge and had many challenges in his life. His teenage years saw him constantly in trouble, in jail, living on the streets and finally fleeing to the west coast on a freight train to look for drugs. That is when and where the Lord caught up with him. (Please see below for several YouTube testimonies)
Graham landed in our life group and during the next 2 years, Suzanne, our family, and I spent a significant amount of time with him. His girlfriend, Pamela, and their son, Malachi cam to stay with us for several weeks during the Fall of 2017 and not long after that, Graham, himself, moved in with us. Suzanne has been feeling for many months that we were to offer him a place to stay and so it turned out that around Thanksgiving of that year, he needed a place. He lived with us for about four months in total. He ate with us, did life with us, went hiking with us, and shared in family devotions with us. Around Christmas of 2017, Graham asked Pamela to marry him and they began to make plans. Graham eventually relocated to the Austin, TX area to get a job and to prepare for their wedding. It wasn’t long after his arrival in Austin that he contacted me, David, to ask for a favor. “You are the closest thing that Pamela and I have together as a pastor. You mean a lot to me. Would you consider performing our wedding?” I felt that God gave a firm, “Yes.” Graham and Pamela were married on Saturday, August 4, 2018 before the witnesses of many friends and family as their son, Malachi slept on the floor by the alter. God is good! All the time!