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My name is Corey and this is my story.  I grew up in the Willamette Valley in Oregon.  As far back as I can remember, my family life was a mess. My dad drank and partied a lot, and my mom worked more than I saw her.  My dad’s drinking lead him to having anger outbursts towards me which made me feel unwanted.  What sealed the deal with feeling unwanted were his physical attacks. 

As I got older, I realized that I didn’t have to put up with my family life, so I started to run away.  I had made friends with a kid in school and his family loved me.  Through them, I got introduced to meth.  I was 13 years old.  After trying meth, I thought that was the answer to my problems.  It made me feel powerful and fulfilled.  Best of all, I was accepted by the people I was using with.  The drug world ruined my outlook on people and life.

By 15, I was selling dope to everyone I could and introduced my friends to meth for the first time.  Progressing into sin, I squeezed the throttle, living in the fast lane.  I thought I had it all made; except I was in and out of detention centers and boys homes.  As I got older, I ended up in the county jail.  Meth subsequently took away all my love for humans.  I was like a bomb before it exploded.  I was rotten, cruel and mean. 

I had a girl that did not use that I met along the way.  She was always telling me I was better than the life I was leading.  I did not care what she said and I had no hope!  A few people I knew went to Teen Challenge and seemed to be having fun and they weren’t getting high.  I still had that girl and her mom telling me to go to Teen Challenge.  After going to jail long enough to get clean, I thought “what if I could get clean and maybe have a better life out there for me?”  When I got out of jail, I called Teen Challenge.

So with a feeling of rapture, I started a new chapter of my life.  To my surprise, there are tons of rules and guys.  I remember telling myself “I’m in this all the way” and hoping to stay.  A few months into the program, I read Isaiah 42:3.  It talks about God being with us.  Through it all, I had flashbacks of me shooting up or being on the wrong side of a gun, and Jesus being with me.  I was a passenger in a stolen car.  I had a bad feeling, so I left the program.

An hour later, I got a phone call telling me my buddy Joe had died in a high speed pursuit.  God had favor on my life and I didn’t know it.  Psalm 37:4 – take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.  I did just that.  I gave my life to God; I gave my heart and my will to Him.  And I got messed up in a good way.

I have a sister that I haven’t talked to or seen in five years who is now my best friend.  My family relationship has been restored.  I’m finding joy in serving others and not meth.  God is showing me that by allowing Him to change my heart and bear fruit, which I have a bright hope and future apart from drugs.