by Michelle Ofori-Ansah
In a joyous Texas-sized celebration this past October, Golan Gordon Lindsay married his beautiful sweetheart Krissia Sanabria, a CFNI alumnus and a lawyer from Honduras currently studying to obtain her U.S. bar acceptance. Celebrating with friends and family from many nations of the world, they made a covenant before God promising to honor, love and obey until death do they part. In his written portion of the vows, Golan said, “When I say I love you, this is what I mean: I will cherish you as a gift from God, celebrate you for who you are, honor you above myself, serve you with joy, support your vision and dreams, and sacrifice for you . . . ”
For those who know the Lindsay family, the beautiful depth of love displayed held tremendous significance. Since Golan grew up in what often felt like a fishbowl, a common situation for those whose family is well-known in ministry, and because he had troublesome spots as a youth, his story is especially compelling. With Golan now part of the leadership of the worldwide ministry, Christ For The Nations (CFN), and the understanding of how “Mom” Lindsay had said that she hoped that her grandson Golan might carry out the legacy of leadership for the ministry one day, seeing whom he had chosen to be his life partner and companion in that role was important for those who know and love the family and ministry.
Golan grew up living on CFN’s campus as the son of Dennis and Ginger Lindsay, the current President and Chief Operating Officer of CFN. He is the first to say he was “raised right” but didn’t always seem to make the right choices. “I constantly got into trouble. I lived on the edge, testing boundaries, often obliterating them and doing whatever I wanted to do.”
“My heart wanted to do right, but I just gave in a lot, and when I gave in I couldn’t stop. I used to crave the excitement, and I just did what I wanted. Afterward, I would ask, ‘God, why can’t You just take this desire from me?’”
In the spiritual tug-of-war he was experiencing, it was his parent’s godly marriage and steadfast testimony that reached him through the darkness he felt surrounded in. Golan knew he had to make a big change if he was ever to have that reality himself. So he left Tulsa having completed his B.A., and came home .
“I just knew I was tired of living this way,” he said. “I saw in my parents’ lives that they were blessed. Their lives were going in the right direction and mine was going very wrong. I didn’t want to choose this wrong path anymore. I saw my friends in the clubs and how their lives were messed up because of their lifestyle. I wanted to choose the path my parents had chosen, serving the Lord because even though it was often hard, they were very blessed.”
In His enormous faithfulness, God reached out to meet Golan exactly where he was. As he felt himself turning from the world back toward God, Golan shared his desire to make right choices with his mom and she encouraged him — he could do it. He had tried before, but this time it was different — over the next month, God sparked a passion for the Word and prayer in him. “After this point, I didn’t have any desire to do those sinful things anymore,” he explained of receiving his God-given freedom.
Over the next years, Golan earned his MBA and worked in the Christ For The Nations business office as Director of Human Relations and then Director of Operations. “The Lord did a miracle. He put an excitement in my heart to read good books, read the Word, to be in prayer. I took a year off sports; I didn’t play, I didn’t watch TV and that was the best time of my life. I was so content and nothing could bother me. I just wanted God,” he explained.
It’s clear now that that precious time was about God setting the stage to answer the deep desire of Golan’s heart; to have a life blessed like his parents, to come together in love and marriage with a God-fearing woman and to face life together.
Golan met his future bride, Krissia, about five years later. He had been walking with God and doing his best to follow His plan, not actively looking for his future wife. Then he saw Krissia and everything changed. They met when she started at Christ For The Nations Institute, and got to know each other on the CFN Israel Tour, which she was invited by her pastor to join.
“After the Lord helped me to turn my life around, I knew the type of woman I wanted to marry, but I really didn’t think I would be able to find someone who I was attracted to, yet who also had a strong relationship with the Lord — until I met Krissia. There was no playing on the edges of things, or finding gray areas with her. She truly lives a life above reproach. And, she is beautiful as well,” he said with a smile.
Krissia herself was born in El Salvador. While her story is different from Golan’s in many ways, she also went through trials testing her faith and obedience. She vividly remembers that her mom first came to know the Lord when Krissia was only 5 years old, becoming the first Christian in her family. Her dad, however, was against Christianity and did not approve of her mom taking Krissia and her older sister to church. This was such a struggle between Krissia’s parents that it resulted in a one-year separation. But it was during this time that a tenacious ability to stand in prayer for an answer from God was birthed in this young girl. Not only did her father eventually come to the Lord, he received a call into ministry. Years later, the entire family moved to Honduras as missionaries to pastor a church. So, Krissia too is familiar with growing up in a ministry family and the sacrifices involved. She also shares a wonderful spiritual legacy she has in her parents.
Krissia remained steadfast in her faith throughout her life, spending time under the leadership of Pastors Ricardo and Reina Salazar from Cristo A Las Naciones ministry. She was a youth pastor, worship leader and held many ministry leadership roles, yet keeping a heart of obedience to the Lord to wait for the right one was still a struggle at times. Her pastor, Ricardo Salazar, was a CFNI graduate so she had a longtime desire to attend the renowned institute to sharpen her ministry call although she had to wait until it was the right time. Throughout her undergraduate and master’s degrees, she sought God for her husband and for the release to attend CFNI. While waiting was hard, she determined to follow God’s plan no matter the sacrifices required.
It was eight years after it had been on her heart to attend CFNI, and going now required laying down a profession, friendships and leadership roles. But, she was reminded of the call she had felt on her life for ministry, and so she came.
Just three months later she would meet Golan Lindsay. “Even though it didn’t look like it at times, my life was not about waiting, but committing myself to the plans of the One that never fails,” she said with joy.
Two years after meeting, Golan proposed to Krissia in Jerusalem. Then, just five months later, they were married. As they stood at the altar before God and their community, they came with their unique story, showing an outward triumphant testimony of their obedience to the God who never fails — joined in joy by the many loved ones who undergirded and stood through many years to contend for God’s best for them.
Golan shared his thoughts on his new marriage, “I am blessed beyond measure by Krissia. Her walk with God inspires me and I love that. God has truly done ‘exceedingly abundantly above all that I ask or think’ (Ephesians 3:20).” Krissia is the crowning jewel in Golan’s testimony, he says, proof that redemption is possible and beautiful.Like what you've read? Receive free email updates from The Voice Online: Subscribe