Daniel faced a lot of challenges as a child. “I grew up in a wicked home of drug abuse, alcoholism and family violence,” he said. “However, this did not keep me from being taken to church with my friend’s grandmother.”
The truths he learned at his friend’s Sunday school helped Daniel cope with the difficult realities of his life.
As a teenager, he convinced his grandparents to take him to church, where they gave their lives over to Christ. “It was a glorious time,” Daniel said.
However, this “glorious” period in Daniel’s life did not last long. In 2000, his grandfather passed away, and Daniel was left reeling. He began to blame God for taking away the most important person in his life, “thus starting my years of wandering aimlessly, lost in this fallen world,” he said.
During this season of wandering, Daniel began to struggle with anxiety and depression. For years, he self-medicated, searching for his identity in drugs, alcohol, gambling and women.
In the summer of 2020, Daniel enrolled as a Crossroads student. For the past year and a half, he has been challenged to dig deeper into God’s Word and apply it to his life. Through his Crossroads studies and the encouraging words of his mentors, Daniel explained that he is “reading all kinds of scriptures that will lead [him] to be a better husband, father and member of society when [he is] freed.”
Reflecting on his past, he said, “I know God was with me always. I see that now. Now, here I sit at my worst of times but feeling better than ever, for I mended my relationship with God.”
Daniel views his future with hope, knowing God will be with him every step of the way.
“Every day of incarceration gives me the chance to build my relationship with God and get the strength I need to face the many challenges ahead. I am so thankful the Lord never gave up on me, and I’m lucky to have Him in my heart now,” he wrote. “Crossroads has helped me transform into a new man with an uplifting new addiction to myself and Christ. . . . I’m truly experiencing a feeling I never felt before, a happiness that makes me proud to be me because Christ is in me.”
Every day, Crossroads mentors get to walk alongside their students and witness stories of transformation like Daniel’s. Through their letters of encouragement, Crossroads mentors develop mutually enriching relationships and have the opportunity to reflect on God’s faithfulness in their own lives as they help students discover God’s love for them.