Student Gives Back by Sharing Testimony of Transformation
John’s early life was marred by tragedy and hardship. His father passed away when John was four years old. At seven, John was separated from his mother, placed in foster care, and not returned to her until he was fifteen. Four short years later, he was in prison.
A forty-two-year sentence didn’t deter the young man from continuing his criminal activity behind bars because crime was essentially all he knew. As a result, he spent his first eighteen years behind bars involved in illicit activity and drug use that took a massive toll on his body.
This path led John into the depths of despair. “I’ve been paralyzed, shot, stabbed, addicted to drugs, homeless, engulfed in sin, and spiritually dead,” he wrote to us in a letter. His life had reached a breaking point, and he found himself yearning for something greater—something that could lift him out of the pain and chaos he had known for so long.
The turning point came when he attended a prison church service and encountered the words of Jesus in Matthew 11:28: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” The words resonated deeply with him, offering a glimmer of hope. From that moment forward, John committed to reading and studying the Bible, seeking solace and guidance in prayer, and embracing the love and forgiveness of Christ. His commitment to grow in faith eventually led him to Crossroads.
Through his studies and the support of mentors over the past five years, John experienced a complete transformation. “Crossroads has been a vessel that God has used to transform my unfortunate situation [into] a school of learning,” he wrote.
Crossroads’ resources provided John with the opportunity to deepen his understanding of God’s Word. Mentors’ unwavering support offered him a sense of belonging and acceptance. He recognizes the importance of mentors in his faith journey, emphasizing the significance of mentors teaching biblical truths rather than personal opinions. Their guidance and wisdom have been instrumental in John’s growth and transformation. By modeling the love and teachings of Christ, his mentors have encouraged him to embody the Word of God in his daily life.
John’s life serves as a testimony of God’s redemptive power. Despite a tumultuous past, he firmly believes that God has a purpose for his life.
“God saw the best in me when everyone else saw the worst. He had a plan, and His plan will not be in vain,” he wrote. John is now determined to use his life as a vessel of light and hope, sharing his testimony to inspire others and illuminate the transformative power of Jesus.
“God reconciled the world through Jesus Christ; now, Jesus reconciles others through my testimony,” John shared. “He uses my life to be a light to others, that if He could save me, bring me out, He can do the same for them. He fills me with a love and a strength that is beyond words yet exemplified through action. I’m grateful for you, Crossroads, for fueling me with the Scriptures, for feeding me, for extending your love and caring heart to a stranger.”
John’s journey with Crossroads Prison Ministries is a testament to the life-changing impact of the Gospel and the unwavering love of Christ. Perhaps God is inviting you into someone’s story of transformation. Learn more about becoming a Crossroads mentor.
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