Come and hear, all you who fear God,
and I will tell what he has done for my soul. Psalm 66:16
I spent almost a decade of my life lost, surrounded by complete darkness. My addiction to prescription narcotics had become so out of control that I was consuming 100s of pills on a daily basis. As my tolerance increased, I then began using intravenously… An imaginary line I vowed never to cross.
As a result, In 2008, I almost lost my life to my addiction after contracting endocarditis-a staph infection in my heart-which would then move to my lungs causing ‘multiple bilateral septic pulmonary emboli’ tiny poisonous blood clots-also experiencing complete system failure because of the septic blood now flowing through all of my vital organs. I would spend the next 2 months in ICU.
Due to withdrawal, I experienced violent grand mal seizures on a regular basis. I was so depressed & hopeless that I believed suicide would be my only chance at freedom. From psychiatrists to new age gurus, I tried everything in search of a cure. I was told by countless physicians that I would always be on an antidepressant. That I was just to “chemically imbalanced” to go without one. But no matter what the world offered me I only spiraled further down, eventually becoming completely agoraphobic – fear controlling my life to the point I didn’t go outside for almost 2 years.
But it’ll be four years in March since Jesus completely delivered me from the strongholds of depression and addiction. It was through Teen Challenge that I learned the tools I needed to assist in the healing process. The depression I once experienced – so debilitating that I once believed suicide was the only way out-now completely gone, without the use of antidepressants.
The life controlling addiction that I was imprisoned to throughout all of my 20s – now obsolete. It was during that season in Casa Grande, AZ that I learned how to fight with the sword of the spirit-the Word of God.
“For the weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” (2 Cor 10:4)
Teen Challenge – in my case the Home of Hope – taught me how to stand on the authority of my identity in Christ. I began to acquire knowledge on how to take every thought captive and make it obedient to the Word of God. I became aware of the fact that our battle is not against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness in high places. I discovered that all though there is a real war going on for my soul in unseen realms – there is no reason to fear, because He who is in me is stronger than he who is in the world. I came to know that through the Blood of Jesus I am more than a conqueror. For the first time in my life, I was no longer a victim but a victor.
And today I can say with absolute certainty that the common world view of “Once an addict always an addict” does not apply to me. Jesus continues to prove himself faithful in His promises
He is My healer. My great physician. My wonderful counselor and I now find myself completely restored in him. I continue to practice healthy habits that I learned at the Home of Hope like reading the Word daily and making that a top priority. I have confidence that God is still working in my life transforming me more into the image of Christ everyday taking me from “glory to glory”
I feel obligated according to Isaiah 61:1 to proclaim freedom to the captives and release from darkness to those who are still prisoners to a lifestyle ruled by addiction.
I am currently attending school to be a licensed drug and alcohol counselor in hopes of inspiring others with my story of deliverance because I know we triumph over the enemy by the blood of the lamb and the Word of our testimony (Rev 12:11). I am experiencing a life full of freedom and supernatural joy like never before. I am truly a new creation in Christ. Thank You Jesus!!
So to anyone out there who is currently struggling with addiction – I know how hard it is. I know how lost you feel. But I encourage you not to let another day go by without finding a Teen Challenge program – they are located all over the country and now thanks to Teen Challenge Global all over the world.
To all the parents out there who have children battling addiction, don’t give up hope. Complete recovery IS possible. My life is evidence of that.
The Word says God is no respecter of persons-he shows no favoritism. His love is perfect. The miraculous healing he performed in my life he can and will do for your sons and daughters. Never give up and never stop praying for them!
To Teen Challenge and all of the people who contribute through acts of service or financially through sponsorship… Thank you. There are no other words. Thank you for teaching the truth. Thank you for facilitating a program were genuine freedom can be found. Thank you for sharing the love of Jesus and being a light during some of my darkest days. Thank you for making the possibility of healing my mind, body & soul a reality through the Blood of Jesus and the environment you provide. And thank you in advance for all the lives that will be saved as they come to know Jesus through your future work.
Thank you Teen Challenge Global. The world needs you more than they know.