"Before I came to Hope House, I didn’t have any direction in my life. I was a really angry person, and even worse, I was very close-minded. I had made a lot of mistakes in life out of misplaced loyalty, anger, reckless decisions, and I had no control over my life whatsoever. I started looking for places where I could get the help I needed to change.
Repeatedly, I was told by the people I trusted that they didn’t know what to do or that it wasn’t their job to help me. Things went so far that I ended up in jail, and that’s where I met Jon Calloway, Program Living Director at Hope House. I remember explaining that I had reached out to people and was consistently told that they couldn’t do anything to help me. I told him that I couldn’t take one more person saying it wasn’t their job to help me. He responded, “It is explicitly my job to help you,” and that’s exactly what he did.
Being shown a lot of direction from the Bible was a big part of what gave me enough peace to start putting things back together, realizing that I could take things one step at a time. There was a better way than doing everything on my own. In the past year, I’ve spent as much time as I possibly could in Bible study, and I became a Christian. I’ve been able to foster connections with people at Hope House and other Christians who were there for me and had enough patience to take the time to care and talk to someone like me. It has improved every area of my life.
I’m going to culinary school because I came to Hope House and graduated Jobs for Life. I’ve rebuilt relationships with members of my family because I’ve gained the humility and peace that allowed me to put those relationships back together in a Christ-like way. I’ve even joined Hope House, and I work here now as a Transportation Associate."
“Out of the last 14 years, I spent at least 12 of them in prison off and on. I got married in December 2016, and by Valentine’s Day, I was in a 6-month substance abuse program in Owensboro. While I was there, I learned some things about myself, but I didn’t defeat alcoholism. I already had in my mind that I was going to get that one drink after graduation. That one drink turned into hundreds, and those drinks turned into cocaine, and cocaine became my love instead of my wife.
On November 16, I got divorce papers in the mail. On New Years, I was arrested for trying to break into my girlfriend and her boyfriend’s house with guns. I thought I was protecting her from him. By the grace of God, I couldn’t get into the house. At that time, I felt alone and unwanted. I felt like nothing, like everybody was against me. I finally let go of everything and let God take control, and doors started opening when I recognized my addiction for what it is. Before Hope House, I was denied by three different recovery homes because of my gun charges. I got the application for Program Living in the mail in September, but I didn’t think they would accept me.
On October 8, at 9 o’clock, Jon Calloway, the Program Living Director, was at the jail to take me to Hope House. No other director would’ve picked me up himself. I’m learning to forgive myself and others. I had a grudge for my brother for over 15 years, and this program helped me to forgive him. I’m learning who I am and Whose image is in me. This program prepares you to live your life with and for God. Everyone at Hope House is compassionate, and there’s no such thing as calling yourself a failure here. That’s what I like about it.”
"I’ve been in and out of jail since I was 16, usually after a break up. I’ve always tried to please others and be accepted, but when I lost everything I had worked for, I turned to drugs and struggled with depression. A lot of my family have been in and out of jail too, so that’s what I grew up with.
I dated the mother of my child for eight years, but after my son was born, she left and I went back to drugs. The last time I was in jail, my social worker suggested Hope House because she didn’t think drugs were my real problem, I needed to find my purpose in life. I’ve been in the program 3 months and 4 days.
I’ve learned that I can’t do this on my own, and I can’t try to find myself in other people anymore. They won’t always be there, but God will. I grew up in church and was baptized, but I was always half and half. I was the type of person who only believed in death. Looking outside, who created all of this, there’s got to be a higher power than myself.
I’m looking forward to reconnecting with my family, and maybe not only changing myself but helping them change too. Before, my son was used against me and I didn’t see him much, but now, I get to see him almost every week. I want to build a relationship with him and make sure he doesn’t make the same mistakes as me."
"I found out that the woman I had been dating for five years and had a kid with cheated on me, and I handled it the wrong way. I didn’t care anymore, so I started stealing, got on drugs really bad, had a don’t-care attitude. I ended up getting in a lot of trouble, and I caught a lot of drug charges.
My friend in jail told me about Program Living. I kept doing the same things over and over then coming back to jail, and I just wanted something with structure. I was tired of getting sent to places with no structure or guidance, where it was easier to get drugs in rehab than it was outside. I knew Hope House would be better for me, since it’s a Christian program.
I’ve been in the program almost five months, and it’s been a journey for me in the short time I’ve been here. It's taken some real prayer. I have learned that I don’t need to beat myself up over things I couldn't control, that I have worth, and I am somebody. I’ve talked with Justin so much about what’s happened in my life, and my friend from Texas came all the way here to see me; it means a lot knowing I have people who fully support me.
After I graduate, I can’t wait to have stability, a good job, a car, and to take care of my daughter. I’m doing this for myself too, but it’s mainly for my daughter. She needs a good dad, someone she can rely on."
"I grew up in a family of alcoholics and drug addicts, and I always told myself I wouldn’t be anything like them… but I turned out just like them. I’ve had an ongoing battle with drugs for years, and in 2017 I caught three different charges of possession and one charge for trafficking methamphetamine. Because of these charges, I was facing a total of seven years behind bars.
I was given the option to participate in a rehabilitation program, but I didn’t want to do just any recovery program. I had been sober for ten years after drug use in the past, so I knew my continued use wasn’t because of the drugs themselves; there was an underlying cause.
I had tried to commit suicide several times by drug overdose because I didn’t care about life anymore. I believe that God allowed me to go to jail to give me sobriety, and I was in a cell with a lot of guys who found God in jail. They influenced me a lot, and my time in jail put me on a path to finding God and better intimacy with him.
When I learned that Program Living at Hope House was focused on developing a better relationship with God, I knew that it was where I needed to be. I didn’t just need sobriety, I needed something to satisfy the underlying cause of my addiction.
After two months in the program, I decided to leave. I was allowed to come back but had to restart the program, so I’m officially one month into the program, with eleven months left. This whole experience has made me realize I can’t do anything on my own. Without God in your life, you’re truly lost. He’s the only way you’ll be able to accomplish anything that matters.
I’ve learned that nothing is finished in my time. God is still working. Since I’ve been in Program Living and truly given my life to the Lord, I wrote a letter to my ex-wife taking responsibility for my mistakes. I invited her and my son to come see me at church, but I didn’t expect it to happen anytime soon. They were there a week later. It’s nothing short of a miracle and has definitely caused my faith in the Lord to grow stronger.
I’m looking forward to simply getting back to life, having a job and a home, and building a better relationship with my children. While I’m still in the program, I hope to gain a stronger relationship with Christ and get to the point that I’m a disciple for the Lord. I want to help other people who have walked the same path as me see how great life can be when Christ is your center point."