Testimony of Herman and Ally Rose – Graduated July 24, 2016
First I want to say thank you Father God for saving my family.
It is horrible to stop and think back, how unaware I was that my choices
were leading my family down a path of destruction. I had arrived at a point
of giving up. I was at peace with the possibility of death, but at the time
unawares of hell as my final destination.
My family was constantly surrounded by prayers from other families
and I truly believe that without those prayers my family and I would not
be where we are today. We never set out or intended to hurt my family, but
in our addiction we did things that we not only were ashamed of but things that
we would never have done had we been sober.
We had arrived at a point where we couldn’t take care of ourselves
let alone our kids. In all actuality our kids were the ones taking care of us.
They came to us one day and told us about the Dream Center, and about the wonderful
things that they had seen. People being delivered from their addictions and more
importantly families being restored. At the time we were still in denial and had
no intentions of seeking help or even believing that we needed help.
So we continued to spiral uncontrollably down in our addictions, until one
day I woke up in the hospital. At the time I couldn’t remember where I had been or
what had happened; I also had no feelings in my legs. My wife and kids told me that
I had went missing for 36 hours and that they had looked everywhere for me. My 16
year old son found unconscious on an individuals porch who none of us knew.
Throughout the next couple weeks I began to have a revelation. I was
trying to figure out what I had done. I was so disappointed with myself and
just could not understand why I continued to do the things I had always done
and hurt the ones closest to me that I so dearly loved. I finally began to realize
that we had to change. We could not continue living the way we had been living.
Me and my wife began to talk about these things and the kids had brought up the
Dream Center again.
By the time we had made up our minds we were homeless, our family had been
completely separated and I was at a place of depression that I couldn’t possibly
explain. I felt so hopeless, it seemed like there would be no fixing our family.
Not long after coming to the Dream Center things started looking up. We
have been in the Dream Center now for 7 months and its just amazing the things that
God can do for you if you surrender yourself entirely. Once we had turned our lives
over to him it was as if he picked us up and carried us. He took the pain that we
were carrying he took the stress the depression and he held us. We began to find
healing within ourselves followed by complete restoration of our family. Without
the Dream Center and God working through it there really is no telling where our
family would be today.
Testimony of Forrest Miller – Graduated August 7, 2016
I was born on August 7th of 1994 in San Antonio, Texas. Three months later my parents separated and I flew to Springfield, Missouri with my mother. I was living a fairly regular life until I was introduced to methamphetamines when I was only 14 years old. I only intended on using occasionally when I first tried it, thinking I was in control.
It wasn’t long after I first tried meth when my best friend from my childhood committed suicide and I never spoke to that entire side of my family again. Instead of turning to God or my family after the death of my best friend I chose to turn to the meth and completely dove in head first to a lifestyle consumed in drugs and alcohol. I no longer drank or used occasionally to enjoy myself and pass time, the drugs and alcohol began to control me and I no longer had a choice to use it or not. The drugs became the only place I knew to search for happiness, and my life was nothing but attempting to escape reality and avoid the pain I had been ignoring as long as I could.
I was 19 years old and was a full blown addict, in the process of trading my addiction to meth for prescription pain medication when I was dragged outside of a moving vehicle during an attempt to purchase prescription meds. I was dragged about 30 feet and rushed to a hospital afterwards, and hospitalized with internal bleeding. That was hands down the most physical painful thing I had ever experienced in my life. I then began receiving my own prescriptions and it only got worse from there.
Last year on my 21st birthday I woke up to my utilities being shut off, and was given an eviction notice allowing me 10 days to move. I had just lost my job two months before and had nowhere to go this time. I had lost all contact with my parents and after a failed suicide attempt, by the Grace of God I was able to contact my father and he introduced me to the Freedom Dream Center program.
Since I joined the Dream Center 6 months ago it has quickly became the best decision of my life. I have been completely set free from addiction to drugs and alcohol and of slavery to sin. I’ve found the unbreakable foundation of sobriety called Jesus Christ and he also wants to restore the life of every individual reading this right now. Not only is God in the business of restoring the lives of anyone suffering from addiction or life controlling habits, but he is also in the business of restoring the families of each person. For the first time in years I’m now in contact with all of my family, and finally know what it feels like to make family proud. I had no idea what life was until I surrendered it to Jesus Christ, and the mercy and grace God has for all of us is unlimited and if anyone thinks their sins are too big to be forgiven, He would like to disagree. Isaiah 1:18 says, “Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Through your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” This gift of salvation is available to all, and is freely given to all who are willing.
Testimony of Jeff Hannah – Graduated October 21, 2014
When I entered the Dream Center, it was directly from a hospital bed; I had a diagnosis of end-stage alcoholism and addiction. I had given up a wonderful loving wife and son, and a career as a Coronary Intensive Care Charge RN. I had reached a point where each morning before I was even fully awake, I was obsessed with one question: “Is today the day it all ends, the day I finally die?”
More than once I had seen men die horrible painful deaths from alcohol and drugs, and been personally heartbroken and even angry at them at the sight of their sobbing wives, children, and parents at their bedsides. But it was the complete despair I felt when it was my own young son weeping at my bedside wondering if he would still have a daddy when he got up the next morning, that was totally shattering! Thank God, when we totally come to the end of ourselves and finally become humble before Him and give our lives to Christ, we can begin to find peace, purpose, and passion.
Our God delights in showing Himself strong at the exact moment there is just no other possibility or hope for our deliverance! I am now blessed to have the opportunity to follow the example of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in making the most out of each day as a staff member here at the Dream Center.
If you are reading this and hurting right now. Please know that God stands ready and waiting to help, and so do we! God bless you and Thanks!
Testimony of Elizabeth Cotham – Graduated December 18, 2016
Hi my name is Elizabeth, I am 33 years old and I have 3 other sisters and a brother, of which I am the oldest. We are all from Aurora, Mo. I want you to know how much Jesus loves you. I also know that if you are truly seeking God and asking Him for a way out, no matter the circumstance, Jesus is faithful and will do exceedingly and abundantly above all you can ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20) He knows your heart and your efforts. He hears your prayers and he feels your pain. He loves you dearly and wants to do even greater things in your life than he’s done in mine. I come from a family of drug addiction. My mom is an alcoholic/drug addict and my dad stayed constantly and consistently in and out of my life. I was a built in mom and baby sitter. By the age of 12, I was smoking cigarettes, by the age of 13+14 I was having sex and drinking vodka on a regular basis, by the age of 15 I was introduced to methamphetamines. At the age of 16 I married a 40 year old man, quit school, moved out on my own, hung around meth cooks, became one, and the over the next 16 years my life spun out of control. 11 years of that I spent with a very abusive man. He started out calling me names, and pushing me around but before I knew it I had black eyes and missing teeth. I spent a lot of time justifying and thinking it was “love” because there were still good times in between incarcerations. Both of us spent numerous time in and out of jail and prison. I thought we would have the kind of relationship I imagined in my mind but it never happened. Things just got worse and worse, until there were no more “good” moments left. At this point I knew he was never going to change, and I desperately wanted out and was willing to do anything. Everything seemed hopeless. I was sitting on the bed in a motel room in Dunwig, MO contemplating over and over what I was going to do, and how I was going to get out of the mess I was in. How was my life ever going to be any different? I had burned every bridge, I had no friends, nowhere to go, and I knew if I stayed with this guy any longer one of us was going to die or I would spend the rest of my life in prison. As I was running all of this over and over in my mind, driving myself crazy wondering what I was going to do. I got up and turned the TV on for a distraction. A few minutes passed when I realized it was the “Passion of the Christ.” Jesus was being beaten and at that very moment it was like a flood of hope came upon me. All of a sudden I remembered Vacation Bible School as a little girl I went with the neighbor kids. I remembered what they said about Jesus; John 3:16 “for God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son that whosoever believeth in him shall never parish but have eternal life.” It was in that moment I knew Jesus was my way out. I quickly ran to the bathroom lifted my hands and asked God if he could see me down here in the deep dark depths of darkness I wanted out of. I didn’t want to live that way anymore. From that point on I started seeking Jesus, listening to Christian music only. I spent my time praising and worshipping in prayer (constantly) every chance I had. The more I did it, the more I wanted to do it. It took some time; so don’t give up. (Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen) it will come to pass in your life. Today I am a graduate of the Freedom Dream Center and currently on staff so I have the privilege of ministering to other girls just like me. God has empowered me and given me the ability to leave the past behind me. He continues to open doors no man can shut in my life making a way and I depend on him for everything. He is my knight in shining armor. I’m full of His Spirit and the Word. I’ve never felt more love and peace in all my life. I’ve never been more alive, he has placed people in my life that truly care about me and are here to help me every step of the way. I have an intimate relationship with the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He is more than enough, he’s more than just the Lord, he’s my glorious friend, and he wants to be yours too. (Romans 8:31 – if God is for us, who can be against us, what can man do to us). I wish I had more space but it sure is nice to meet you, hope to see you in Heaven.
Testimony of Howard Sinclair
They say that happiness is a habit, but for twenty-eight years of my life happiness became a shattered memory of what once was my life. At the age of six years old I was molested several times by my step brother. For years I carried the pain and the memories of what he did to me. At the age of fifteen years old I took my first drink of alcohol. It made me feel utterly free and at ease. This was the beginning of my decent into the realm of addiction. A world where there is only limited ways of escape. You either end up institutionalized or dead. After high school I joined the Navy and after I was out thirty-six days, I joined the United States Army. Drinking was the name of the game after drills all day. It became an every day ordeal for me to go out drinking with the boys. I began to think that it was totally fine to do what I was doing. I served my country and it was my prerogative to do what I wanted to and when I wanted to. Shortly after I was realized of my duties in the army I traveled to Killeen Texas to see my brother Jason who was serving as a military policeman in the United States Army. The night that I got there I was introduced to a gentleman that got me a job as a bouncer at a very well known club. The pay was great and the party life continued to spiral out of control. I was smoking pot and drinking on a daily basis. I thought what better life a man could ask for that to get paid to beat people up and drink as much as you wanted to during work hours. I became very well respected for who I was and how I presented myself. I felt like I was living the life of a rock star. That all came crashing down the night that an officer named Killen PD (Who was part of my clientele) knocked on my door and told me that my father suffered a heart attack and that I needed to head home. As my life went on I was in and out of relationships with women. Some lasting a month and some as much as four years, but all of them ended because of my addiction. Talk about being humbled. I drove eighteen wheelers for a few years. Most of the time I was intoxicated. To say the least after twenty eight years in my addiction I never wanted to deal with life on life’s terms. It hit me like a freight train every time, and I used that as another excuse to get drunk or high. I truly believe that is why so many people pursue addictions into the gates of insanity or even death. I started participating in AA meetings trying to find hope for this hopeless man. Meeting after meeting was not going to help this addict. I felt so helpless; I started praying that I would die during one of my binges. Some addicts go on for many years denying their problem. Some addicts go on for many years denying their downward spiral into social, economic, and moral decline. Every addict has a rock bottom. I met mine after twelve trips to detox centers, countless hospitalizations from alcohol and prescription pill overdoses, where my surrender was merely conditional. I knew craziness in a way that non addicts could never comprehend. My family was sick of me; they still loved me but told me that I needed to find hope in God and not man. I thought God, what are you talking about” Oh, you mean the same God that allowed me to become a social misfit and a raging alcoholic. I blamed God for all my problems. Come to find out he was the solution to my problems not that master of them. The summation of what had gone wrong in my life, and perhaps society in general up to this very day, was expressed by King David some 3000 years ago. In Psalms 36:1,2, He tells us: “There is no dread, no respect of God in our eyes. In our own eyes, we flatter ourselves too much to discover and hate our sin”. The longer we lie to ourselves, deceive ourselves, or remain in denial about the truth, the more likely we are to base our decisions and actions on this false belief system. I called Pastor Tony and without hesitation he welcomed me into the Freedom Dream Center. Here I was shown hope and that my life did not have to spiral out of control. After twenty-eight years of living an addict’s life, I began to dream again, see hopes in my life and see a future. Possessions no longer define me, and I know I’m forgiven for my past mistakes. The self centered, “never enough” life that nearly destroyed me is gone, and has been replaced by the peace and hope that only God can give. I now wake up with real joy instead of wondering if I will ever wake up at all.