JOY Stories




I can’t even begin to count how many years I sat in the living room on New Year’s Day having already blown my resolution for the year which was ALWAYS to get sober. The fact that New Year’s Day was a day off work always a good enough reason for me to drink. The truth was a Tuesday was a good enough reason. The fact that I was awake was a good enough reason. I always made the resolution with best of intentions, and I rarely made it an hour or two into the new year. I grew up in Dallas as an only child in a very strict home that focused on performance above all else. My mom and Dad divorced when I was 12 and I began trying alcohol to help cope with the stress in my young life. By 14 I had moved on to drugs.

My drug use got severe when I was in my 30s. By that time in my life, I was using all the time and I started getting in trouble with the law. I had a daughter who bounced back and forth between my house and her father’s house when I would go to jail. I lost my job. I lost my house. I overdosed on pills and ended up in the hospital on suicide watch. There was a young girl from Nigeria in my room who sat quietly and read her Bible, and basically babysat me to make sure I didn’t try to harm myself. This sweet girl asked if she could pray over me and I said sure, why not? I had always believed in the existence of God, but never followed Him. She prayed over me and asked if I would accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. When I said yes, everything in that hospital room began to glow like sunlight. I had peace like I had never felt. I remained in the hospital for several days. Before I left, this girl gave me a Bible and told me that Jesus would be with me wherever I went. When I left the hospital that day, everything in the world was bright and vibrant like I had never seen it before. If only I had embraced that and stayed in that place but I didn’t.

Over the next several years, I was arrested again for drugs and shoplifting and other crimes I committed to get money for drugs. One day probation showed up at my house with a drug test and I knew that I was in big trouble. Not only did I fail that test, but I failed 4 tests in a 45-day period. They had no choice but to put me in jail for probation violation. I laid in my cell crying and screaming to the Lord to help me, to save me. I said it over and over begging for His help. I couldn’t do it anymore and I knew there was only one thing that could help and that was Jesus. He saved my life that day and nothing had been the same since.

Probation released me two days early so I wouldn’t lose my new job and I went with my daughter to church that Sunday. I literally ran to the altar and rededicated my life to Christ. I can still remember every song that was sung during the service. When I left church that day, I decided I wanted to listen to Christian music for a change so I turned to the first station I found which was The JOY FM. The first song I heard was Redeemed by Big Daddy Weave and even now it brings tears to my eyes to even think about that song. It will always and forever be my favorite.

I will always be an addict and an alcoholic but more importantly, I will also always be a child of God. I am saved and I am never alone. In times of weakness, I can always turn to Him. I am so blessed. If God can save someone like me, then I promise that He can save you too. God gets all the Glory for my miracle.

Photos for Michelle


PHOTO 1 of 13