Thank You ALL…

Thank you everyone for the amazing comments. In the last 4 days this blog has received 45,000 views. That is awesome and is very much appreciated. I also saw that the CNN article was the most popular and most recommended story for Friday and Saturday. The first 4 days it had over 1.2 million views. Thank You Everyone. Hopefully this can shine light on the issue of the opportunity to travel and help others through Upward Bound Outreach. We have a trip coming at the end of September and the funds are not there yet but we are still planning the trip as these kids don’t deserve to miss this program just because we are still trying to get funds. If anyone can help or knows some one that would be interested then please contact Upward Bound Outreach, myself, or make a donation on our website. Thank you everyone for your comments that have astonished me. I have loved seeing all your own testimonies and speaking requests. I hope God gets all the glory for everything that is happening. -cK

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  1. #1 by Sonnet on September 5, 2010 - 8:53 pm

    Chris, I hope you don’t mind me asking a question instead of just leaing a comment. How do you get past the feeling of being betrayed, not just by your earthly father, but by your Heavenly Father? How do you reconcile what happened to your family – good, innocent people – with the idea of a just and loving God? And so help me, if you tell me that “God’s ways are mysterious” line I’m giving it all up right now. I don’t want a faith that lets me down like this, that drops me when life is too brutal for faith to exist. That’s no kind of faith at all.

    • #2 by Arne on September 6, 2010 - 5:59 am

      Keep the faith, I am thinking of you, praying for you and hope for the best for you and your family. I am a survivor too, and you can hold your head high and be proud.

      Arne King

    • #3 by Jennifer Bell on September 6, 2010 - 7:22 am

      Sonnet,

      I wish I could answer more specifically to your situation, but I cannot. I don’t know the hurt that you feel. You are certainly not the only person who has questioned faith in times of hurt.

      What I can tell you is this: I know the sweetest love because I have been unloved. I know how good it feels to be healthy because I have had a disease (incurable, but I have good days). I know what it is like to give birth to beautiful children, and I treasure that more because I was infertile for 12 years. (I’m 39, BTW.) I know what it is like to be energized by the Spirit of the Lord because I have lived through the darkest days.

      In the darkness, when my life was at it’s lowest, I remember the Lord reaching out to ME. I didn’t have the ability to seek Him. I was humiliated; my husband had left me for another woman. I was empty; I had just had a miscarriage after 9 years of infertility. I had nowhere to feel secure; my house had just been listed bc of the divorce, and was sold in 11 days. All of that happened in four weeks.

      Sometimes we cannot see Jesus as we’re walking through the storm. The clouds are dark, and the rain is too heavy. But He is there. Trust that you’re being prepared for things more beautiful than you can see right now… in your current state.

      Praying for you!

  2. #4 by Mimi on September 5, 2010 - 11:10 pm

    your story was a very touching and inspirational one that really spoke to me on a personal level. I went through a somewhat similar experience, having lost my mother and my twin brother at the age of three and have always felt alone in my pain. Reading your article was comforting as I honestly felt as if someone had finally been able to put into words what I have never been able to accurately verbalize myself for years. I too married young at the age of 20 and now have two beautiful kids and an amazing husband who are my entire world. Thanks for telling your story, and for reaffirming that people like us are not irrecoverably broken.

  3. #5 by dan on September 6, 2010 - 12:25 am

    chris you are an inspirational human being
    may the remainder of your life be filled with joy after the horror you went thru
    take care
    dan

  4. #6 by Lisa Brown on September 6, 2010 - 12:40 am

    What a blessing it was to read and share the CNN article about you and your remarkable testimony!
    Surely God is getting all the glory!!!!!!!
    Be blessed!

  5. #7 by carol goulding on September 6, 2010 - 12:44 am

    What an amazing story–God bless you and your very special family! You are living the reason you were saved.
    sincerely,
    carol goulding

  6. #8 by William Miller on September 6, 2010 - 1:05 am

    Hi, I read the CNN article tonight. I have two young boys (7 and 3), and I, too, can’t understand how a father could hurt his kids. Anyway, even though I don’t know you, I’m so glad you are now happily married with a family of your own. Don’t know what else to say, but, Thank God. Bill Miller

  7. #9 by JP on September 6, 2010 - 1:07 am

    Chris, thank you for sharing your story! I think your story could move the hardest of hearts, but as a mother who left a violent relationship it certainly resonates deeply with me. There was not nearly the help for battered mothers and children in 1985 that there is today…which is why laws like VAWA are so important, but there is still so much work to do – keep shining your light, lest anyone forget! You and your growing family are the rainbow after the flood, the empty tomb behind the stone…the proof that even to this day God brings triumph from tragedy.

  8. #10 by Ricardo Morales on September 6, 2010 - 1:29 am

    God Bless you.

    You have a beautiful family. Beutiful son.

    Keep your work God will keep blessing you and your family.

    Your are right good will always beat evil.

    Ricardo.

  9. #11 by Renee on September 6, 2010 - 1:52 am

    I just came over here from CNN and felt compelled to let you know that the story was very moving. Thank you for giving back. God bless you.

    • #12 by calvin shin on September 6, 2010 - 5:47 am

      Hi, i just wanted to say,after reading your CNN article, that I also truly believe that it was God’s will for you to survive and carry on His Word and message and to share His unconditional, perfect love to everyone in this world. I was moved by this article, and it is amazing how God works. God Bless!

  10. #13 by Wanda on September 6, 2010 - 1:56 am

    It’s amazing what you’ve all overcome. Yes, a bad start in life, doesn’t define a person! I wish you and your beautiful family all the best.

  11. #14 by Tim Dunn on September 6, 2010 - 2:03 am

    Chris, what an amazing story you have to share! I was very touched by your story and am glad that you shared it with CNN so that it could reach even more people. I’m very sorry about what happened to your family but it’s amazing to hear how such good can come out of a tragic story such as yours. God truly can use the worst circumstances for His glory as you are doing in your life with your ministry. May God continue to bless you and your family in the years to come and may you continue to heal as you share your story with others. God bless!

  12. #15 by chris hughes on September 6, 2010 - 2:06 am

    Read your story today. Blessings, my friend, as you continue to share your how God has changed you.

  13. #16 by Dona Curry on September 6, 2010 - 2:20 am

    God is LOVE and I am ever thankful for the gift of YOU! Thank you for hearing his call to encourage and guide other youth who have experienced such terrible starts in their young lives – just as you did – but thanks most of all for giving them hope and sharing your own witness with them.

    You are truly an amazing human being – actually, I believe you are an angel!!

    God bless you!!!!

  14. #17 by Corey on September 6, 2010 - 2:20 am

    Chris, first off you have a good looking family. You are here for a reason, thanks for all you do. Corey

  15. #18 by Still.Standing on September 6, 2010 - 2:25 am

    Thank U for your testimony & assurance -GOD is still incharge. Whatever he has planned will come to past. NO questions asked. Praises go up for the blessings & holy ghost filled love. I am elated for salvation thru Jesus Christ. Saved by his grace. Keep you hand in GOD’S.

  16. #19 by vicki gale on September 6, 2010 - 2:29 am

    Wow! What a moving story. Your son is adorable and your wife lovely. You are so brave and have displayed so much courage. May God Bless you and your family through eternity.

  17. #20 by bethany on September 6, 2010 - 2:32 am

    thanks for sharing your story…what an amazing one. you have a beautiful family.

  18. #21 by Pasquale on September 6, 2010 - 2:35 am

    Chris,

    I read your story on CNN, and I have never answered or wrote to anyone before even with all the hate and evil in this world. I just think you were blessed for some reason, only God knows why, and what you have done along the way is very admirable. God bless you and your family and enjoy your life and the lives of those you love!!

    Peace!

    Pasquale

  19. #22 by Ron on September 6, 2010 - 2:50 am

    Keep up the great work. You’re an inspiration. Talk about turning lemons into lemonade. The ultimate example. Hope you’re forever proud of yourself. And contually freed from that which was beyond your control. Best wishes to you and yours. Ron.

  20. #23 by Elizabeth Karbo on September 6, 2010 - 2:50 am

    God Bless you Chris for what you are doing. What an amazing story. Sharing your story and doing so much good for others demonstrates the power of the Lord and the strength he has given you to do so.

  21. #24 by Elias on September 6, 2010 - 2:56 am

    Your story shakes me to the core. As a father of two boys – I cherish them every day. My relationship with my father was tough – but never what I just read. You WERE alive for a reason, and your sadness and trials you went through have miraculously put you in a spiritual and fatherly place. You will never be what was before you – you create your own love, priorities and passions. Your family and son are so honored to know you have a love that many will never know. Fully realized.

    I am proud of your story, saddened by your loss of a family AND a father, and am inspired by your dedication to move forward.

    You are inspiring….continue to tell your story, it will heal many in ways you will never know.

    If only it makes me think one more time how lucky I am, and how meaningful my sons are to me…

    Elias

  22. #25 by Ainslee Bowers on September 6, 2010 - 3:06 am

    What an amazing story, I hope your life continues to improve.

  23. #26 by Carly to Chris-I have a story too! on September 6, 2010 - 3:12 am

    Chris, Oh my goodness, I can obviously not even imagine u going through what u had, however I do have a true story myself, considering almost 7 years ago, I was a senior in college in SC, w/ a volleyball scholarship and my team almost all went out on jet-ski’s and I as a passenger on one, had hit atree w/ the other girl and since we were giong full speed, I hit my head SO BLOODY HARD that I went to the emergency room and was given two brain surgeries and was in a drug induced coma for almost 4 whole weeks. U can check out my site, if you’d like, it’s http://www.healcarly.com I do certainly AGREE 100% of the way though, God Almighty certainly had His hands on me that day and ever since also. AMEN! It is so incredibly great that you are doing so FANTASTIC w/a wife and a son also. Take care and always remember PRAY TO OUR #1 ALMIGHTY SAVIOR! God Bless Chris! Carly Draudt

  24. #27 by Radiant Glow on September 6, 2010 - 3:18 am

    Thank YOU for sharing your story… You have such a powerful testimony. In 1998 my family was victimized by gun violence. It shattering our existence. We had to learn how to live again. My brother was shot with a .9mm hand gun and sustained a spinal cord injury and my sister, while holding her 10-month old daughter, was shot with a .22 in both her legs. Over the past 12 years we have shared our story with thousands of people. Hearing your story and joureny of healing reminds me of my own journey and how God can turn what the devil meant for evil to good. It’s now our ministry, our life story to reach the youth, reach the lost.

    Thank you and god bless your family.

  25. #28 by Angela Bies on September 6, 2010 - 3:32 am

    May your and your family’s life be full of blessings! Thank you for sharing yourself with others through your courage and work.

  26. #29 by Jessica Udd on September 6, 2010 - 3:52 am

    Chris,
    I just read your story on CNN and it brought tears to my eyes. You are such a strong man. The Lord truly has a plan for you and your life! What a mountain you have had to climb! You have a beautiful family!! I will hug my kids a little tighter tonight, and tell them extra how much I love them. May the Lord continue to bless you!!

  27. #30 by Medisoft on September 6, 2010 - 3:52 am

    Saw your story on CNN, so glad you survived. I have a 5 year old son and 7 year old daughter, they mean the world to me.

    More amazing than you surviving the gunshot is how you have since survived, although I’m sure it wasn’t easy.

    Take care, and your family looks great!

  28. #31 by Mary on September 6, 2010 - 4:13 am

    Just wanted to say Thank You for your story.It touched me dearly. I was an abused child myself & still live life day to day scared like when I was raised not knowing who will live or die day to day. I am 38 now & still have made nothing of myself because I am scared to do so. Looking for a way out.

  29. #32 by N A on September 6, 2010 - 4:17 am

    Your story touches my heart. You have a beautiful family. May God bless you and your family. Love your wife, kid(s) and yourself. Pray for your church outreach program.

  30. #33 by Marion Lee on September 6, 2010 - 4:23 am

    God works in mysterious ways. He has a plan for you, and it seems to me that you have absolutely made the choice to do what God has intended for you to do, and he will be with you, and your family, and guide you for the rest of your life.

    I wish you and your family peace and good health and long and happy lives together.

    God Bless you always

  31. #34 by sheena on September 6, 2010 - 4:30 am

    Seriously man! what a story that was!

    U inspire me.. Also, how is that you survived with a bullet in your head?

  32. #35 by Andrew on September 6, 2010 - 4:36 am

    Me, too. Very sorry to hear of such great trials at such a young age. Very glad to hear of your strength and ability to cope despite such scorching events. Very hopeful that time will / has eased your pain and that your life will be your own on your terms and not the legacy of someone’s egregious mistake.

  33. #36 by Bev on September 6, 2010 - 4:43 am

    An incredible story of the mercy and sovereignty of our loving God! You are a miracle! The Wonder of God! May God continue to bless your life and make you a blessing.

  34. #37 by nk shore on September 6, 2010 - 4:44 am

    Hey Chris,
    Just read the CNN article and i want you to know that i believe in you and the God that saved you. I know that through Christ you will make it. Your attitide alone shows that you do not have to live under the shadow of your father guilt. I too grew up in an abusive home and I have broken the chain of dysfunction through Jesus. May the lord bless you and keep you all the days of your life.

  35. #38 by Leah on September 6, 2010 - 4:45 am

    Chris…Just read your story on CNN. You are a wonderful and deserving person who certainly deserves the best in life! You live close I see you work in Fort Worth. I live between Denton and Decatur. I have three grown adult children around your age. I am so proud of you for your accomplishments in light of your experiences at such a young age and I wish you many positive and healing experiences throughout your life. Have fun with your family …being a parent is so much fun and lots of work…but your child will be the light of your life!

    Sending good thoughts and positive energy your way…

  36. #39 by Sara Nicole on September 6, 2010 - 4:50 am

    I too read your article posted through CNN. Very moving, touching, and powerful! Blessings upon you and your family!

  37. #40 by Olivia on September 6, 2010 - 4:51 am

    Hi,

    Your story is amazing. I wanted you to know that I relate to what you went thru & you reminded me to be grateful for the life GOD has blessed me with.

    My father too committed suicide not aware I was watching. I sometimes wondered in his last few moments of thought did it cross his mind to kill me, brother, mom, then himself. I wondered if something I said triggered his actions. Finally I wondered how come he never thought of how his selfish act would affect the rest of my life. I spent many yrs dwelling and hurting only myself to a point I too almost lost my life before I realized that it wasn’t my fault, realized that I had a right to be mad even hate him for what he did so that I could mourn and finally accept what happened.
    I am healed now and very happy. Thank you for sharing your inspirational story and reminding me that this too shall pass because it will as long as you have faith.

  38. #41 by Jay on September 6, 2010 - 4:53 am

    Hey Chris, I just read your story on CNN’s website. Glad you turned out ok and have a great family of your own now.

    Your story is an inspiration. No matter how bad things get, there is always light at the end of the tunnel.

    Best of luck with your future.

    Jay
    (Seattle, WA)

  39. #42 by E on September 6, 2010 - 4:57 am

    Thank You for sharing your testimony on cnn.com.

    My pastor taught from 2 Samuel:9 at church this morning.

    His topic: Against All Odds.

    God is working.

  40. #43 by Tanyeno on September 6, 2010 - 5:20 am

    Hi Chris,

    I read your story on CNN and simply gutted by the fact there are adults roaming among us who are so conflicted, and unwell they would do something so horrible. But this kind of thing, I’ve come to understand on two levels. First that is a spirit, which works in people and second society’s fail that they never notice a person who is so unwell til they exact this kind of atrocity. I am sorry for the failure of society, our failure that didn’t catch this in your dad and for our lack of foresight which almost killed you. But, God bless you and may the rest of your family rest in peace. I assure you, I personally have this kind of violent crime on my radar and I intend to create works that possibly build a sensitivity to the seed form of it brewing. It sounds like you have a beautiful family and have grewn into a strong young man, healed. All the best with all and thank-you again for sharing your history with us.

  41. #44 by Nathan on September 6, 2010 - 5:35 am

    Chris,

    I read your heart-breaking and amazing story on CNN. I’m thankful you survived the tragedy and that you have turned to the Lord, instead of against Him. You’re an inspiration to me, and a living lesson in forgiveness.

    Nathan

  42. #45 by Ed Silva on September 6, 2010 - 5:41 am

    Many scientists have spent years denying God’s existence and trying to explain life or death. Many scientist have tried to prove Jesus miracles by science. None have succeeded and none will ever do so. I know God exists, because I died in a car accident at the age of 19 (’79). I never told this to anyone, since nobody would have believe so. Till ’86 when my younger brother had a similar experience. I still don’t know why God gave me a second chance. But one thing I know. God exists and loves me.

    Congratulations in finding God.

  43. #46 by Paula on September 6, 2010 - 5:55 am

    I too, saw the article on CNN, and it encouraged my heart. What a testimony of one who trusts God to overcome, and I hope it encourages others who have experienced such deep hurts. God is the ultimate healer, you’ve proven this by your life. Thanks for sharing your journey with us!

  44. #47 by Joey Middleton on September 6, 2010 - 6:35 am

    Chris-

    What an awesome testimony. Much like the many replies have already stated, I stand in awe of the God we serve and what He’s doing in your life. I was, literally, moved to tears in reading your story and brought to a place of repentance for making issues out of stupid stuff…I thought I had a reason to want to give up on life and I end up coming across your testimony. God bless you and your family brother. I would say to you and to anyone else whose life has been void of their natural mother or father, for whatever the reason-it may be tough, but Christ is the only affirmation in life we need. In the book of Matthew, if you notice, after Jesus Christ was born-we don’t hardly hear anything about Joseph after his birth…virtually nothing. However, when He was baptized by John the Baptist-God, the Father said, “This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased.” That was all Jesus needed in order to be affirmed, for his life to mean something, to matter…and boy did it matter. The same thing with you man, God had a plan for your life Chris and whatever you do keep preaching and testifying your story. A dying world needs to hear your testimony. God is so good and He’s worthy to be praised!! Keep doing what you’re doing and may God truly continue to bless you and your family. You’ve begun a new legacy and heritage with a son of your own now and if the Lord tarrys, this seed you’ve planted now with your son, this new chapter in your generation, is going to be the beginning of greater things to come from the Keith heritage. Stay Encouraged, God bless you and though we’ve never met, I love you with the Love of Christ brother. Jesus Reigns!!

    Joey

  45. #48 by Mila Igat on September 6, 2010 - 7:47 am

    Chris,

    God, has a good reason for you to live. HE will always guide you and your family.

    Mila

  46. #49 by Frida Budak on September 6, 2010 - 9:03 am

    Hey Chris!

    I just wanted to say that I read your story at CNN and it really touched me.. I have gone through many difficult trials in life, and your attitude really inspired me. I am also christian, and I believe that God has bigger plans for us, than we have for ourselves.
    May God bless richly your lovely family!

  47. #50 by Geneva on September 6, 2010 - 9:33 am

    You are amazing. I am a survivor too. I’ve remembered part of joke from a comedy skit and it’s been something that I’ve hung onto because of the wisdom that it brings with it. “Your friends are God’s apology to you for your family” My story is different in that the circumstances were similar but not the same. However, it has been God and my friends who have been my saving Grace – who have pulled me through. Praise goes to Him though. And for what it’s worth – your story touched my heart and reminded me of HIS presence in my life and all the wonderful changes that have been made in it since then. Thank you so much for sharing! I’ve really appreciated reading your story.

  48. #51 by Jen on September 6, 2010 - 11:25 am

    Chris,

    God bless you and keep up the good works that you are doing with your life! Yes, something good can come out of the bad, and you are living proof. I can see that your life has had a wonderful impact on many. My dad also was violent toward my family, and one night in a drunken rage, he probably would have killed us, but fortunately, he did not have a gun, and we were able to get out of the house and run to hide at the neighbor’s. I don’t think a person can ever be totally ‘healed’ from this type of upbringing – for my family it was ongoing for many years; however, good can come out of it in they way we decide live our lives as adults.

    God Bless you!

  49. #52 by Teri on September 6, 2010 - 2:32 pm

    Hi Chris,

    I just read your story on CNN. Wow. I just want to send so much love your way, and remind you of what you have fought so hard and so successfully to realize: the actions of your father have zero reflection on you. It doesn’t matter one bit that you are connected by biology – after all, we are ALL related! Please remember that any time any little bit of uncertainty creeps into your mind. Blessings to you and your lovely family – including your brave grandparents. They were so wise to tell you the truth and be there for you as you worked through it. Hugs from a motherly stranger …

  50. #53 by Emma on September 6, 2010 - 5:47 pm

    Dude dude dude i have a pile of tissues here. I just read that article and oh my gosh praise the Lord you made it because you are doing such a work in people’s lives i’m sure. It’s nice to see someone like you in the news for a change. Kudos on your personal journey and determination. Youth need more people like you talking to them. Amen you are a miracle. God sure is wonderful, isn’t he? 🙂

  51. #54 by Eric on September 6, 2010 - 8:23 pm

    Just read your story… it was very touching. I fought for years to “not be the man” my father was. We all have agency and sometimes innocent people pay the price of others poor choices. Your positive choices will have a far greater impact than any bad choices your father made!

  52. #55 by Malik on September 7, 2010 - 12:31 pm

    Chris,

    I read your story on CNN.com and I tell you it is a truly remarkable story of survival. It is a wonder how some people kill their entire family and then themselves. I guess we will never know why these people are so selfish, they should just take their own lives and leave everyone else alive. I have A 2 year old little boy and he gives me an unbelievable amount of joy everyday. He is the funniest, smartest and most inquisitive little bugger in the world ( to me of course). I could not imagine hurting him, ever. I hope your story inspires others to look within themselves and not take the course those selfish parents have.
    Thanks you for sharing your story.

    Malik

  53. #56 by johannah on September 17, 2010 - 12:58 am

    just read the cnn article. you’re right, chris, God has saved you for a mighty purpose.

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