“The Mission saves lives… it saved mine.”
Eric was proud of the seven years of sobriety he had achieved. But it all fell apart when his brother passed away…
“I didn’t know how to mourn, so I turned back to drinking and doing drugs,” he says.
As a kid, Eric and his brother had been sent to a foster home together when Eric was 11. They relied on each other, but Eric started drinking and using drugs to cope with the pain of abandonment. “When I took a drink I didn’t feel alone anymore… I was happy.”
When his beloved brother died, Eric spiraled into a black hole of despair. “I got fired from my job… wasn’t eating. I knew I had to do something.” As he considered suicide, he knew deep down that he needed help – and when he called the Mission, we had a bed ready for him.
When Eric walked through the doors of Long Beach Rescue Mission, true healing began.
“I knew this was the last hope I had,” he says, thoughtfully. “Out of all the places I called, this was the only one I came to. I was drawn here.”
Through the daily routine of classes and counseling, Eric is developing the tools to cope with grief and other difficult emotions without alcohol. Learning to rely on God for strength and peace through all circumstances.
“I work breakfast in the kitchen. I’m in chapel every day. I pray to God and He’s showing me things about myself that I need to change if I want to live a better life.”
Though he’s unsure what the future holds, Eric now knows that the Lord is always with him. “One day I’m sitting on a chair in chapel, and I heard a voice inside say – just as clear as day – ‘Don’t be afraid to come to me.’ That was God.”
Eric is beyond grateful for this second chance in life – and says it’s thanks to the love you’ve shown for a neighbor like him. “I know God brought me here. Now I know He’s real, and I have a purpose.”
To read the rest of this issue of Rescue Review, click here.