A little bit about the founder of Focused and Free.
From that point on it seemed that my family and I were under severe spiritual attack from “the adversary of our soul.” When I turned thirteen, Dad became distant and rejected all my affections. Mother became so ill that it affected her personality. She was constantly losing her temper, yelling and screaming at dad and me. She would throw dishes at my dad or just pull them out of the cupboard and smash them. She’d whip and beat me with whatever was within reach. Mother’s condition was incorrectly diagnosed as mental illness. It adversely affected our family.
One month after my 14th birthday, dad died while having an asthma attack. A year later, mom had a hysterectomy, in which the true cause of her illness was found; endometriosis [a massively infected cyst attached to her uterus]. It took her two years to regain her health, and her emotional recovery was never complete. The damage done from the illness, and the electroshock treatments they gave her under the misdiagnosis, had already taken their toll.
By age sixteen I could no longer tolerate conditions at home. I felt betrayed and abandoned by the God I had grown up with. From age thirteen I had been told by my mom that I was enough to make a preacher cuss and that I was destined for a life of imprisonment. I had calluses on the back of my legs and buttocks from all the beatings with belts, wire clothes hangers, and tree switches. Nothing I ever did was good enough. I was under constant physical, verbal, and emotional abuse. Feeling unloved and unwanted, I attempted suicide. When that failed, I ran away from home and went looking for the “free love” I was seeing on TV and heard people sing about in the music of the time. But instead of “peace and love” I discovered “sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll.”
East Colfax Avenue) for a number of years. I played at jobs and women, but booze and drugs were my true love. Occasionally I would sober up for a month or two, usually because some “Christian” girl I lusted after, had been trying to convert me. But after a brief respite, I’d always go back to my old friends, ‘Bud Weiser’ and ‘Mary Jane’ (booze and marijuana).
On July 12, 1999, I began my journey down the road to recovery. That was when I began working with a man I had met in Alcoholics Anonymous. At the end of our first talk, I asked him what the next step was. He told me, “90 meetings in 90 days and start going to church.” Since that time my wife and I have been actively pursuing a greater understanding of God’s grace and His plan of Salvation through faith in Christ. I am truly grateful for God’s love and direction in my life, even when I didn’t want it. As the old song says, “I once was lost, but now I’m found; was blind, but now, I see.” (Amazing Grace, John Newton, 1779 )
Peace in Christ,