I had a conversation this week that just made my day – or my week! Isn’t it amazing how someone else sharing their good news can brighten your life? I have been close with a young man who grew up in our church – from the first week he was born, in church three times a week, parents doing all the right things, loving and disciplining and teaching him right from wrong. But in spite of all this, he ended up hanging with the wrong friends and becoming a drug addict. The last few years have been a nightmare for all involved – drugs, arrests, thefts, broken hearts, strife and turmoil and the end nowhere in sight. He has turned it over to the Lord on multiple occasions, been to rehab on multiple occasions, and the relapse was still just a weak moment away.
He called me this week and left a message that he had a testimony that I might or might not want to hear, but he wanted to share it with me if I was willing. He and I have been around the block on many a sharings of truth and of lies and of new beginnings and of more disappointments, so I wasn’t sure which category this was going to fall into, but I was thrilled he had reached out. I heard he had been in prison and I didn’t even know he was out. So we exchange phone messages a couple days, and eventually we reach each other. He begins by telling me that he had been arrested and put in jail, and it had saved his life. I had felt for a long time that jail would be the only hope for him to stay alive, as he was on a path of self-destruction that was a step away from an overdose or a bad batch or just a gunshot wound while he was in the middle of stealing something. But him recognizing it was great to hear.
He begins to tell me that before he got arrested this last time, he had been so overwrought with the bleakness of his situation that he literally got weak in the legs and fell to his knees before God in his bedroom, and truly, truly surrendered. I didn’t have to ask “What about the other times” as he went on to detail how this was different than the other times – it just was real and it was total surrender to the power of Jesus Christ because he was at the end of the road and there was nothing else to hold back. As he talked and told me about his experiences in prison, him eventually leading the Bible study on different days, my spirit began to leap with excitement – I could FEEL the change, could just FEEL the realness of this conversion and how God was working in this young man’s life. I’ve got to tell you, this has excited me like nothing has in a long time. Because this IS A MIRACLE! This young man had turned to God on multiple occasions, and it lasted until it didn’t last any more.
Tom and I were having a conversation a few weeks ago, and he was telling me about a friend of his from high school he had seen who has been a social worker for 40 years, and she shared with him that she had seen program after program, rehab after rehab, and it is her belief (not a Christian person) that the ONLY thing that truly works and changes someone from the inside out with LASTING benefits is salvation in Jesus Christ. She said she’s seen it time after time, and it is the only lasting rehab program she has seen. I shared that with him, and he went on to say how he just could not believe how the craving left him – that he could see someone getting high and he had no desire for it whatsoever; that God had totally removed the desire that he has been battling for so many years.
And I know what you’re thinking: “We’ll see how long this lasts.” And we will, this is true. But for those of us who KNOW the power of Jesus Christ, how He heals from head to toe, we KNOW that all things are possible! And I wonder how much we’re sharing about that power with those we know to be drug addicts? Are we so mad about their destruction of their own life, their parents’ lives, their grandparents’ lives, their lying and stealing and destroying that we’ve lost our compassion and our desire to show them the way? I have felt for many years the call to work with the drug addicted, and it just had not presented itself as a viable alternative with the situations in my life, but I feel God calling me more and more to the streets, to those who have no hope, who have no belief in anything but that next high. I am praying God will show me how and where and when….but that opportunity could be living right beside of us, or could be sleeping in the bed down the hall, or could be our friend’s child or a kid from our youth group. I pray that you will join me as we look to the REAL miracle maker, the one who can do what no program or rehab can!
My name is Teresa Evans. I am a wife to Tom, a retired Circuit Judge, and I am a court reporter by trade, a mother by God's grace and a lover of Jesus Christ. I've grown up in a family blessed with many miracles, and have received multiple miracles myself.