I was a high school jock. I played high school football. We were State Champions three out of my four years in high school. But when I was about four years old I experienced some deep severe traumatic abuse from a family member. I never really told anybody until I was about 21 years old, to a friend.
When I was younger my Mother battled tremendously with depression. I would often hear my mom say that she didn't want to be here anymore and that she wanted my Dad to [so to speak] take her out of this world. It was very hard for a young boy to hear. She thought I wasn't listening. But really I was. As a young child, it is very difficult to hear that.
At the age of thirteen, I experimented with drugs for the first time. When I took drugs for the first time it started off with pot. When I experienced pot for the first time I felt like I was whole. I felt like something inside of me was complete. I began to have that I never thought I would have, friends of mine who loved to be around me. We thought that we were the cool kids. But it filled something inside of me. It filled something that, it filled something that I thought that I was missing, that this was something that I needed.
I was in a car accident with this girl that I was dating, that nearly took my life. We flipped and hit another car and I didn't have my seatbelt on. I hit the windshield and it nearly killed me and just two or three months later, the same girl that I was dating, comes up to me and tells me that she doesn't know if she can go without cheating on me. That devastated me, you talking about rejection. That began the down spiral all the way. I drank every night. I did everything I could to erase those feelings of rejection. There were times I wanted to kill myself. I laid there in my bed. My world was spinning. I didn't know where my life was headed and it was almost like, I felt like the Holy Spirit walked into my room. As I was sitting there I felt the Holy Spirit rest upon me and say; "You know, you would go to the ends of the earth to tell the world that you love this girl [that I was dating] and you're running away. But why is it that when it comes to my love you run from me? Why is that?" I didn't have an answer. Immediately that night I sobered up that night, for just that night. I felt like I had a presence, I was in the presence of God. And so a few months went along I was still drinking still doing these things and finally, I watched the movie The Passion of the Christ. I went back to my dorm and I sat there and just bawled and bawled and bawled. I said; "God you did this for me." I gave it all to God and I surrendered completely. I didn't say the sinner's prayer that we hear about in church a lot. I pretty much put my hands in the air and I told God; "I cannot take this anymore."
One of the things that I dealt with the most was the feeling of rejection. I knew I had to go back to all my friends and share this and I knew that I couldn't hang around the same crowd. When I fully gave it over to God He immediately gave me new friends. I had a young lady on that trip that night who told me that I needed to come to a campus ministry that she was involved in and within one month I had hundreds of new friends.
You know, when I wake up in the morning He's there. When I go to bed at night He's there. He knows who I am. He knows my name. Even those hard times, those dark times when I was laying in my bed and I didn't know where my life was going to end up. My Mom was saying these things and the abuse was taking place, He was there.