Growing up in East Hartford, Connecticut, Tim Moynihan loved war, espionage and sci-fi. He chaffed at school with a longing for adventure, so at 18 he enlisted and started boot camp following his graduation.
He first jumped out of an airplane with the Army Airborne during the summer between his junior and senior college years as an ROTC cadet at Providence College in Rhode Island.
“I wanted to be the guy, Captain Willard, portrayed by Martin Sheen” in Apocalypse Now, said Moynihan, now 52.
Through the Army, he became a commissioned intelligence officer and entered Ranger school in 1990.
“It was brutal,” he said bluntly.
One day, he was climbing up a cliff when he fell. He had read Hal Lindsey’s Countdown to Armageddon. Biblical prophecy fit in with his other interests in UFOs, Nostradamus and metaphysics.
He was no Christian, even though he had grown up in a staunchly Catholic family. Mostly he pursued punk rock, beer and girls.
But as he was falling through the air, a prayer flashed through his head, a prayer to an unfamiliar God. Suddenly and inexplicably to him, the rope tightened and broke his fall, a mere matter of feet from a bloody crash on the ground.
“That was a close call,” he said. “Somehow I knew God had saved me. Then out of the blue, a man at my unit invited me to his evangelical Bible study.”
At first, Moynihan declined, but the guy persisted and he eventually relented.
“I went, hated it, didn’t want to return,” he said.
The Word confronted areas of sin he wasn’t ready to surrender.
His buddy challenged him to attend the Bible study again, but, honestly, the tough Ranger was…. afraid… to go.
“I felt fear about going back,” he admitted. “Yet I had just graduated from one of the toughest, most dangerous military schools in existence, so I forced myself to go again. Then again.
“Suddenly it all made sense,” he added. “One day I was reading in my room and it dawned on me that I was going to hell. That I had been just plain wrong for 26 years. I got off my bed and knelt on the floor and asked God to forgive me for being an idiot for 26 years.”
He became a new creation in Christ on that day in 1991. He married his live-in girlfriend, Sue, within the week – even though she wasn’t convinced of the truths of Christianity until about a year later. Read the rest of the article about Tim Moynihan.