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My name is Reese, and when I first came to Teen Challenge I thought that my life wasn’t that bad and that I just had a “little” slip up; it wasn’t that big of a deal.  I thought that I didn’t really have an issue with alcohol or anger and that my relationship with the Lord was okay.  But almost every night in my sedated mind, I cried out for the Lord to rescue me from this life of shame and guilt and to bring me back into His arms, no matter what it took (and sure enough, what Satan intended for evil, God is using for good).  The longer I’ve been here at Teen Challenge, God has shown me how my life was truly a wreck, spinning out of control; how corrupt my heart had become and how carnal my mind was; and how the enemy had completely warped my perception of my Heavenly Father. 

I grew up knowing God, so how could this happen to me?  How could I be so close and intimate years before and now look just like the world — probably worse than it?  The most miserable person you’ll ever meet is someone who has truly known God — who has tasted and seen that the Lord is good and goes back into his old lifestyle again.

Thanks to Christ for rescuing me out of this life of insanity.  It’s scary how quickly Satan can get you off course with just a couple “little” lies and sins.  That’s usually where he comes in — somewhere “small”.  “Oh, it doesn’t matter, it’s so trivial, not a big deal”.  We buy into it — BAM — now he’s got us.  A sin is a sin no matter how big or small, or if anyone knows, for nothing is hidden from the Lord, all things are before Him.

Since being here, God has been renewing my mind and showing me that He truly does love us no matter how many times we’ve fallen or how far we’ve gone, nothing can separate us from His love. He’ll take us back (and He’s happy to forgive us).  I believe that through my “dry” season, through my season of mistakes and shortcomings, that my Father was there the whole time carrying me through and even now in my “fruitful” bitter season, behold, He still carries me.  I believe that no one can snatch me from my Father’s hand.

God is Who He says He is, and it is He who truly sustains my being.  He is holding me together.  I believe that His calling on my life is irrevocable and that His Word does not return to Him void.  What He purposed to do in my life shall be accomplished.  I believe that He who started a good work in me is faithful to complete it, despite what my eyes, ears, or others might tell me.  Christ isn’t my crutch, He’s my gurney.