2021 has been a whirlwind of adventure and unexpected surprises. In February, after over 15 years working in the rehabilitative exercise field and nearly 10 years owning my own practice, I felt the call to become a part time missionary.
I had already been doing evangelistic outreaches for nearly 3 years, but God was calling me to something more. He was telling me to go to part time in my practice, to expand my vision, and to work towards bringing public praise, worship and gospel proclamation to the entire 941 area and eventually to the entire state of Florida.
Here was the announcement I made about it on 2/21/21- The Biggest Business Announcement I’ve Ever Made (nonfictionfitness.com)
He gave me a target date of July 29th and literally everything fell into place leading up to the transition. I was able to negotiate a great part time agreement with the club, I recruited the perfect partner to take over all our new clients, I received enough donations to buy a huge van, our ministry team nearly doubled, and oddly enough I even had the best month of my entire 15-year career two months before I made the shift! God was providing every step of the way! After I completed my first city to city mission trip in August, our team launched our 3rd weekly outreach location at Riverwalk in Bradenton. This grew the overall ministry by 50%. Things were moving forward so beautifully that it almost seemed too good to be true. Then it got even better.
One week after starting the Riverwalk outreach, I got a message on Facebook from a girl who goes to my church. She had just moved here from Pennsylvania in June, and she said that she saw videos of our services and wanted to be part of them. She said she could sing and play the keyboard and would be willing to come out every Sunday.
As you probably guessed, that girl was my future wife. Her name is Sofiya Romarniuk.
Sofiya and I originally met each other at Riverwalk on July 4th, but even though she is very beautiful and sweet, I was so focused on my mission’s work, my son, my business and on my relationship with God, that I barely paid any attention to her.
Sofiya came to our outreach on 9/5 and she sang a few songs that were amazing. I began thanking God right away that she joined us, because I could see how effective she was going to be.
The next day I was home early from work because it was Labor Day, and I was watching videos from the previous night’s outreach. One lady captured a video of Sofiya playing a song called “Million Little Miracles” and she posted it online. As I listened to the song, I felt like it was speaking right to me. It’s about all the “little miracles” God does in our lives and how He is so faithful to us. As I listened to this song, intense gratitude started to well up in my heart and I could really feel the presence of God. As I did, I also began to feel VERY drawn to Sofiya, who has a voice like an angel. From that moment onward, I felt like I was falling in love with her.
Here’s a short clip from that video- https://youtu.be/9Vx900dVQI4
Her and I talked SO much over the next several weeks and the more I got to know her, the more I wanted to be with her. Within the first two months it was clear to both of us that she was sent here by God to be my wife and my missionary partner.
I asked her to marry me on November 9th and before I could even get the question out, she said yes.
It is absolutely amazing to see how her story so beautifully intersected with mine. She had been leading worship at a church in Pennsylvania for 9 years, but early in the year (around the same time God told me to go part time) she began to feel God leading her to make a drastic shift in her life too.
She works for a State Farm office in Pennsylvania, and shortly after she felt God leading her to make a change, she was offered the option to work from home. That alone is a miracle because her boss NEVER offers that option to anyone. Given that she was now able to work from anywhere, she now had the opportunity to move somewhere else if she wanted to.
After much prayer, God told her to move to Northport, Florida to be closer to her family. Lucky for me, her sister Solomiya goes to my church, even though it is nearly 50 miles away from where they live. That was Sofiya’s connection to my church and ultimately to me.
The sequence of Divinely orchestrated events that were required to bring about this relationship are such a testimony of God’s sovereignty. I’m also amazed that despite Sofiya being so beautiful, that she has kept herself from so much as even kissing a man for 27 years. To me, that is almost supernatural!
Sidenote- if you want to see the first kiss of her entire life, make sure you keep your eyes peeled for the video of our wedding ceremony!
She and I are now gearing up for a summer wedding, and once we get married, we will be stepping into our missionary journey by launching more outreaches in this area throughout the week while periodically taking mission trips to other cities all across our great state. It’s going to be SO much fun!
So… that’s our crazy, amazing God sized love story! I hope you enjoyed it!
Love and blessings,
Chris and Sofiya
To read the more detailed back story click here- https://www.nonfictionfitness.com/bigannouncement/