“Behold, I am making all things new.” - Revelation 21:5
Coming from a broken, addicted and all around dysfunctional family, Shane experienced a lot of soul pain at a very young age and attempted to heal his pain with everything the world had to offer. At twelve years old, Shane’s mom bought him and his friends a six-pack, and he got drunk for the first time. “I drank for the physical and emotional effect from that day forth. Drinking turned into a great escape from the reality of life,” Shane explained.
At the age of fifteen, Shane started consistently using marijuana and discovered cocaine in his early twenties. By the time he was in his thirties, what he thought he had under control was now controlling him. “When I got drunk or high, I’d have an allergic reaction—I would break out in handcuffs. The police didn’t appreciate my sense of humor and had no tolerance for my behavior. I gained the reputation of a wise cracking, angry drunk and had a hard time maintaining relationships of any kind because of my abrasive personality. I either annoyed people or terrified them, depending on which Shane decided to surface that day.”
Several times Shane tried coming to his senses, swearing off drugs and alcohol, but by the end of the day he’d find himself drunk again. He explained, “On the outside I appeared normal, yet on the inside I was in tremendous pain. I despised myself and had no respect for others. I went to church as a pre-teen, hearing many times that Jesus wanted to lead me to freedom, but I thought His expectations were too high, and I didn’t want Him interfering with my drinking.”
Shane eventually married, but his out-of-control behavior prevailed. One night he physically harmed his wife in a drunken rage. Hiding the truth, they continued to party together, but she later told someone about the incident. Refusing to take responsibility for his own actions, Shane put the blame on both his wife and alcohol, and ended up leaving the love of his life out of fear that people would now know who he really was.
He began a new relationship, thinking this would fix everything; but it only lead to more pain and rejection. After hitting rock bottom in December of 2003, his solution, once again, was to run. As he drove away, he didn’t consider that his regret, problems and consequences would be coming with him. Overwhelmed with hopelessness, Shane pulled over at a gas station and cried out, “God, help me.” He called a friend who explained the gospel to him. “That was the day I realized that Christ died for ME.”
Shane began studying the Bible daily, regularly attending AA meetings, and he joined a church. “The spirit was working in me, and I was hungry for knowledge and filled with joy. I realized my relationship with Christ is eternally secure, and that God had created a new heart in me. He loved me when I could not love myself. John 3:17 says ‘For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.’ Jesus saved me from my addictions and healed my soul wounds; but even more—He saved me from myself.”
You’ve heard it said, “The struggle is real.” Shane’s addictions didn’t go away overnight. He attended church on and off, afraid of being judged by the “church crowd” for being a repeat offender. One day he met with his pastor, hearing for the first time the story of the prodigal son. He decided then that he was all in, and the church welcomed him back with open arms. “I didn’t hear, ‘We’re glad you’re back;’ I heard, ‘We’re glad you’re home.’”
Shane has been walking in freedom for twelve years now. The road isn’t easy, he says, but he no longer runs from his past nor fears the truth. “God has helped me abstain from my addictions one day at a time,” Shane said.
Shane is involved in Celebrate Recovery, a ministry at Grand Parkway where addicts can share their current and past struggles in a safe and loving environment. “CR has given me the opportunity to help others find freedom from their addictions. I consider it an honor to be one of “those” people.”
“I didn’t turn my life over to a Jesus who lived 2,000 years ago, but to a resurrected Messiah who conquered the power of my sin and death. I surrendered everything to Him who was offering me salvation, grace, mercy, and a new life. I discovered everything I was looking for: hope, love, and freedom.”