Women, drugs, and weapons

Freed While Behind Bars

Following my pursuit of money into a downward spiral of drugs and crime, I thought I was living life in the fast lane. After repeated incarcerations, an offer of forgiveness rattled my cage, making me realize the prison in which I had chained my soul. Within my jail cell, I finally experienced a freedom I had never known existed.

Living in a Material World

Although my parents provided the material things that most think would make a good life, my family was dysfunctional and torn. At age fifteen I sought to escape my unhappy situation by moving into an apartment of my own.

Following in the rut carved by my upbringing, I focused my energy on making money. Introduced by a friend to drug trafficking, I did my first deal and found the drug lifestyle exciting and lucrative. Hooked on the easy money, I supplemented my drug dealing by occasionally selling weapons and acts of violence.

Dancing in a nightclub

Fast Life, Big Price

I moved to Houston at age eighteen and immersed myself further in the city night life and club scene. I enjoyed the company of the women who went hand-in-hand with my lifestyle; mostly topless dancers and strippers, they were beautiful, they liked my money, they loved to party, and they were not looking for a commitment. In 1994, I met a beautiful girl and moved in with her two weeks later; she would later become my wife.

The price I paid for my party lifestyle was spending time in and out of jail; ironically, I never did time for dealing drugs or any other major crimes I had committed, only for minor offenses. Shortly after moving in with her, I found myself back in the county jail for a month.

Bible behind bars

Reasoning Together with God

A Christian inmate - later found innocent-pursued spiritual conversations me, sometimes catching my attention, sometimes not. Pretending to watch television, I would occasionally edge over to listen to the small group Bible study in my cell led by this man.

One day the man shared a Bible verse that was pivotal in my life. In Isaiah 1:18, God says, "Come now, let us reason together….Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool." This was amazing: God wanted to come together with me and talk about my life of sin and immorality so that He could forgive me! As I lay in my bunk that night, I knew I had come upon the very thing my soul needed. I asked God if this offer of forgiveness was really true. Deciding to trust God, I asked Him to forgive me of my sins and to be Lord of my life. Waking up the next morning a radically changed man, I set about discovering this God who had cleansed my soul.
Praying behind bars
Through this prayer, a radical change transformed my life, and I finally experienced the peace that I had previously been seeking through a lifestyle of sex and drugs. I found that despite the darkest circumstances surrounding me, my spirit now knew joy. With prison bars around me, God gave me my first true taste of freedom

Little did I know that God was simultaneously transforming my fiance into a woman experiencing the joy of forgiveness and restoration. We were later married. Today we are blessed to have two children, and we enjoy the journey of growing together in Christ.