Jimmy begins to rebuild his life after relapse

Jimmy said devotions with Pastor John are the highlight of the program for him.

Jimmy said devotions with Pastor John are the highlight of the program for him.

Jimmy grew up in foster care until he was 17. At that point he “bounced around the East Coast,” he said. “I was a little bit like a rolling stone.”

With not much to tether him, Jimmy decided to join the military. “I didthat for four years and then I came back, but I realized I didn’t really have anything to come back to. I ended up on the streets for 10 years or so.”

Jimmy said he never had any connection to family. “So I got all the issues that go along with  that: feeling isolated, no trust … that’s how it was.”

In 2003, Jimmy went to a Christian based program. “I found the Lord and was in service to Him for 20 years,” said Jimmy, who ended up going to work for the organization that helped him.

“It got me away from me. I was taking care of people.”

Jimmy experienced what he called a “slow erosion” from God. He started feeling “empty, lonely and lost. Now I’m here (at the Mission), and I have to rebuild. It’s hard to know what to do with myself after so long. But I’m taking a good hard look and changing my life.”

Jimmy had struggled with pain medication in the past. “They just kept giving me pills instead of actually helping me get better,” he said. There were other underlying issues aside from addiction—feeling wounded and lost—he said.

Now Jimmy’s been at the Mission for nearly seven months. He says he lives for Pastor John’s teaching and devotions. “It’s steady, and stays the same,” Jimmy said. “And I know genuinely that (Pastor John) cares. I’m staying focused. When you have 20 years invested and it’s all gone, it can take the wind out of your sails. But I’m just focusing on the program and not getting ahead of myself.

“I’m doing my best to put everything behind me that was keeping me from the Lord,” he added. “I don’t have it all figured out—I really don’t know what’s next. I still want to be in service to Him, helping people. I have to be OK to do that. I have to be in good alignment with the Lord, and I’m getting that here.”