“The Mission saved my life.”
When Leon was a little boy, his father told him he was worthless, and Leon came to believe it was true. “He always beat me down and made me feel like nothing,” Leon says. “I didn’t like myself.”
He was just 13 when he began numbing his pain with alcohol and drugs. “I liked the way they made me feel and I continued using them all through my life.”
As an adult, Leon was a functioning addict, starting a family and running a successful business. Then he suffered a severe back injury on the job and became addicted to the opiates he was taking for pain. His life spiraled out of control. “I went off on this crazy, wild goose chase after drugs. I was never able to calm down. It was an insane way to live.”
Eventually, his fiancée left, taking their three children, and Leon fell into despair. “I didn’t want to live anymore.”
Finally, he turned to the Mission for help, and through our Life Change Program’s Bible studies and chapel services, he gave his life to Christ. “I have a personal relationship with the Lord. I talk to Him all the time.”
Leon’s newfound faith and our Christian counselors have helped him address the root causes of his addiction and find healing for his heart. “They taught me a lot about myself,” he says. “Now I can calm down, relax and not worry. I let go and let God.”
He’s rebuilding his relationships with his children, and after graduation he hopes to work here at the Mission, helping other men rebuild their lives. “This place saved my life and I’d like to give back,” he says.
Leon 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 didn’t want to live. But God brought me here and I came to Christ. Now, I’m happy.”
To read our Summer 2021 issue of The Lifeline, click here.