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As a young man my priority was me. My world revolved around sports and whatever else pleased me for the moment. After graduating from high school I had opportunities to further my athletic career at the college level, but I chose the broad road instead. At the age of eighteen, I was involved in a robbery and spent the next year incarcerated.
The scholarships were gone, the friends were gone and I was all alone to face myself with no one else to blame. During that time, I began to see what I had become. For the first time in my life I was also aware that my actions caused deep hurt and pain to others. I was genuinely broken and remorseful for my sin. It was at that point the Holy Spirit was convicting my heart and drawing me to God.
Upon my release at the age of nineteen, I accepted an offer from Carson-Newman University to play football. I arrived at school with only the intention of playing football, but God had other plans. The plan of God included meeting Sonya Lamberth who has been my wife for over thirty years. God used her to show me the joy that comes from knowing Jesus Christ. I was hearing about Jesus Christ for the first time in my life.
I began to see my sin for what is was and how great our God truly is; that in spite of my sin, He sent His prize possession (Jesus Christ) to die for me. After resisting conviction, due to my pride and ego, I surrendered my life to Jesus Christ during a team meeting in August of 1981. I repented and asked Jesus Christ to forgive me for my sins and save my soul, and He did. God has blessed Sonya and I with six children, a wonderful son-in-law and three grandsons.
Lou Paradiso has planted, pastored, and transitioned churches, in Tennessee, Mississippi, Maryland and Pennsylvania. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Carson Newman University and a Master’s degree and Doctorate degree in Theology from Andersonville Theological Seminary. Lou has served as an adjunct professor at Faith Theological Seminary and Arlington Seminary in Baltimore Maryland. He has had the honor of serving as a guest professor at seminaries in Mexico, Peru, and Korea.
Lou has served as a member of the board of directors at Logos Academy in York Pennsylvania. He is certified as a “coach/trainer” with the North American Mission Board / Next Level Leadership in the area of “Team Building”, and is certified with Creative Results Management as a personal and organizational coach/consultant and has served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Brookdale Christian School in Bloomfield, New Jersey.