Completely immersed in a life of drug abuse, drug dealing, & drug manufacturing, Jonathan had lost everything; his home, his business, his future. He had been raised in a good home. He had been a star athlete. His parents owned a successful business. Still, his life illustrated that drugs can affect people from all backgrounds and walks of life. Jonathan’s low point was miraculously avoiding death after being left in the woods by his “friends” after several days with no sleep and little, if anything, to eat and passing out in a creek for a day and a night barefooted with a thin t-shirt on. It was December with temperatures below 10 degrees. After years of bondage & desperation, he found hope in Christ. Shortly after Jonathan turned his life over to Jesus and became clean from drugs, he married me (Kristin). Neither of us knew just how long and hard the journey ahead would be. Even though Jonathan had truly received a miracle, it would be years before he was completely free from the effects of his past. I was a life-long “church girl”, raised in ministry. I had indulged in a few years of rebellion, and although I thought things had gotten pretty edgy, I was sheltered and knew nothing about rehabilitation or recovery.
“Neither of us knew just how long and hard the journey ahead would be.”
The years from just “clean” to “free” were long and lonely. From the outside looking in, you would have seen a great support system; a wonderful church & loving families. Those things were truly in place. Our families wanted more than anything for Jonathan to overcome and succeed. Our church was in prayer and quick to encourage. But in our home, there were lonely days and dark, never ending nights. We both felt pressure from the whole world for Jonathan to be “normal”. He was clean and saved! Still, the depression, paranoia, cravings, and instability were not resolved quickly. There were battles we didn’t know how to fight and tests we didn’t know how to pass. We constantly feared scrutiny & judgment. If Jonathan didn’t appear to be moving forward, we knew everyone would fear that he was headed back to his old life or assume that he had messed up. We both knew that Jonathan had a work to do for the Lord. I knew that if you lose the confidence of those in your church, that you can be affected by that loss for years.
“There were battles we didn’t know how to fight and tests we didn’t know how to pass.”
Thankfully, we made it through. The Lord’s grace & mercy sustained us as we stumbled toward the light at the end of the tunnel. Years later, Jonathan is now the pastor of Harvest Time Pentecostal Church. He is happy, dynamic, and stable. He has a palpable anointing on his life. His church loves him and greatly esteems him. There were times when this outcome would’ve seemed impossible. During those times, it was endurance alone that carried us through. There were days in battle when victory wasn’t visible. There were mountains that took us too long to climb. But, on those days, we endured. We just stood, clinging onto our armor for dear life. Sometimes, endurance alone doesn’t seem enough, but God’s Word warns us of times when all we can do is stand. The problem comes when we “just stand” too long. Standing is for when you’re pulling so hard to keep from going backward that your momentum forward is affected, but that effort is still there. As soon as something breaks a little or gives, as soon as the Lord gives you a boost of strength or clears the current line of attack, the effort you’ve been putting forth to “just stand” propels you forward. So, we stood and moved forward in faith and stood again until one day we looked around to see that we had moved beyond the old battles. We had made it, as long as we kept moving ever forward in faith.
“During those times, it was endurance alone that carried us through.”
The Lord has placed a burden in our hearts for couples that are facing situations similar to our own. As we reflect on our past, we both feel that our experience could have been smoother, faster, and less isolated had we found spiritual guidance from someone who understood that there can be a long road from deliverance to complete freedom. We would have given everything we had to have been able to interact with someone who had been where we were and who was also spiritually grounded and successful. The Lord has called us to put our testimony into action by offering you a plan developed through prayer and inspiration. We have a burden for you, because we are you. We are here to tell you that through Christ, all things are truly possible, no matter how hopeless things seem at this moment. If your home is affected by the journey from deliverance to complete freedom, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and use the topic “Deliverance” in your subject line. We are prayerfully waiting to help you.
“We have a burden for you, because we are you.”