I was raised in a family with 2 loving parents and five children. I had a great childhood. I was educated in private schools. God gave me talent for sports, especially baseball. I was named All- State, All-American, and I made the Jr. Olympics team. I played for 3 years on scholarship to Arizona State University, and I was drafted by the Kansas City Royals and played pro ball for 5 years, retiring in 1998. I was married at age 22 and in 2002 my wife gave birth to our twins, a boy and a girl.
However, beginning at age 14, I had my first drink. I also developed a gambling addiction during my young adult years. Eventually, the gambling addiction cost me my marriage, and all of my money. Alcohol replaced gambling, and my drinking started to control my life. I had 3 DUI’s in 3 years. I stopped working, stopped being a good father to my children, and rarely left my apartment. I had been to several short term rehabs, but relapse came after each rehab. I was a lost soul. I felt so alone. My situation was bleak.
Finally, in October of 2018, as I left a local liquor store with my package goods and was walking away, I was hit by a car going 40 mph. I suffered a broken neck, separated shoulder, torn MCL and ACL, and traumatic brain injury. I should have been dead. God was with me and for me, even when I was not. He preserved my life.
Reluctantly, I called the Westminster Rescue Mission. The first few months here were a struggle. Despite a childhood that included church and religious education, I never had a relationship with God. I always wanted to control everything in my life. I only prayed when I needed something.
Then, in my 4th month at the Mission, I inexplicably woke up one day with a strong desire to pray. I asked God to enter my heart as He had for my parents. And I kept on praying. And praying. And I started to receive small signs from God that He heard me.
My relationship with God has been growing ever since.
My mom passed away from cancer while I was at the Mission. We were very close. Even in that loss, my relationship with God grew stronger. Prayer has become a way of life for me.
I have hurt many people in my life. I have learned that making amends won’t mean anything if I don’t stay sober. I have learned that God didn’t plan my relapse, but He can use it. The Mission has led me to God – to a place and a relationship I heard of, but never believed I could find.
I know life will still have difficult challenges, but I know when I give God control – when He is the driver and I am the passenger, I can face them and together, we can overcome. Thank God, I am at peace.
I am looking forward to being with my children again. I look forward to being a better father to them and teaching them about faith, because it is not fair for them to go through life without knowing about God, about the power of prayer, and about how I am changed as a result of my relationship with Him.