Participants: Cheri Peters (Host), Ron Woolsey
Series Code: CLR
Program Code: CLR00040A
00:10 Welcome to Celebrating Life in Recovery,
00:11 I'm Cheri your host.
00:13 In some circles, there are just some things
00:14 you do not talk about.
00:16 Your opinion may even be labeled as
00:18 politically incorrect.
00:20 That leads me to wonder are there lifestyles,
00:22 and sins that even God Himself is powerless against?
00:24 Are there people that God just writes off?
00:27 Come join us as we look at same-sex attractions.
00:56 Welcome back, you know, what is really interesting
00:59 to me is that when I think about same-sex attractions,
01:02 homosexuality, gay issues.
01:04 Coming from the streets, I came from the streets so
01:06 that is just everyday stuff.
01:07 And coming into Christianity and realizing that God
01:10 has a lot of things that He has spoken about that.
01:14 So I'm going to just start with the story that
01:17 happened to me not long ago.
01:19 I am at a church, and I speak at every denomination.
01:22 If you ask me to come speak about God.
01:24 I don't care who you are, I'm there, I'm so there.
01:27 I don't say well what denomination are you,
01:29 are you a believer or not a believer.
01:31 I don't even care, because I just love to talk
01:34 about God and healing.
01:35 So, I go to this one denomination and we are doing
01:37 a whole weekend thing.
01:38 I am sitting there the whole time thinking,
01:40 does anybody see that the pastor is gay?
01:44 And everybody is not paying attention to that.
01:46 And this guy is so gay.
01:48 I mean, and I don't want to offend anybody,
01:50 but he was just, it was just out of place to me.
01:54 You know in this life, and so I just did the whole
01:59 weekend and every time he got up I just kind of smiled.
02:03 He was funny, he was funny and joking around,
02:08 but even in his joking.
02:10 It was just like, I kept thinking gay, he's gay.
02:12 So we got home late at night after one of the meetings
02:19 that we had.
02:20 It was like 11:30 PM, and everybody was tired, and he
02:23 said Cheri, can I ask you something?
02:24 Can we talk?
02:25 And I thought oh man, he's going to tell me.
02:27 And he's going to tell me and what am I saying?
02:30 What do I believe about all that.
02:32 What was really funny is that I knew he was
02:35 going to like, confess.
02:36 I'm like no, don't.
02:38 I'm like just a mess, I'm an addict in recovery, you
02:42 don't want to tell me anything.
02:43 He said, you know that I'm gay?
02:45 And I'm like yes I do.
02:47 And I wanted to say no, no, really, but how can
02:50 you lie like that when the pastor is being
02:52 so honest with you?
02:53 So the long and short of it is that we get
02:56 to know each other.
02:58 When somebody decides they are going to help him out,
02:59 because there is freedom in recovery
03:01 from all kinds of stuff.
03:02 You know, a heroin addict, you can come out of that.
03:05 Somebody lost in same-sex attractions, addictions and
03:09 all that kind stuff.
03:10 You know all that stuff, God says there's healing.
03:13 Let me just kind of find out what is happening with you,
03:16 and it never is really about the issue.
03:18 So, we are talking about that.
03:19 He is talking to other people, and somebody says,
03:21 you know, you can get some help with that.
03:22 Just to look at some of the stuff they send them to
03:25 San Francisco for counseling.
03:27 I'm like shut up, you didn't go, did you?
03:31 I'm dying because I'm think if you go, you can act
03:34 out all the way there, and all the way back.
03:36 And that's exactly what happened.
03:37 He was married to an incredible woman.
03:39 He goes in for counseling, trying to get some
03:42 understanding about his pain and sexuality
03:45 and all that kind of stuff.
03:46 Yet every street corner, he acted out on.
03:50 So he really starts coming to God.
03:53 You know what, this guy has some incredible hurts and early
03:57 addictions, sexualized behavior, molest.
04:00 He just had a bunch of stuff he had to work through.
04:03 He literally comes to God and God just puts His
04:06 hand on his life and brings him to a place
04:08 of acceptance and recovery.
04:10 His recovery was so amazing.
04:12 We always think its about the issue.
04:14 We always think it's about our sexuality,
04:15 or the heroine or whatever.
04:17 But most of us are so hurt.
04:19 Most of us has such deep rooted junk that God
04:22 says you know I want to heal the junk and everything
04:24 else kind of falls off.
04:26 When you realize how much you are loved, when you realize
04:29 all that kind of stuff the junk falls off.
04:30 So he ends up finding Christ for the
04:34 first time in his life.
04:35 Feels like the Bible says and I want to start here,
04:39 Romans 8:1, it says "so now there is no condemnation
04:44 for those who belong to Christ Jesus. "
04:45 So he comes to God, he literally works through some
04:48 stuff and he feels he is sitting in the presence of God,
04:51 who everybody thinks doesn't even like gays.
04:55 And I hope you don't turn the channel off right now
04:57 because I feel like that statement is offensive,
04:59 but I really believe I've heard that.
05:01 If I haven't heard that out loud, I have heard
05:03 people say, there are certain things,
05:05 that God just doesn't like.
05:07 You know, God doesn't like gays, He doesn't like
05:09 porn addicts, He surely doesn't like molesters.
05:12 I'm a heroine addict, with tons of stuff.
05:15 He surely doesn't like people like me and in the Bible says,
05:18 man where did you get that?
05:21 Because not only do I like you, I love you and I don't
05:26 have any condemnation towards you.
05:27 I'm not putting shame on you, guilt on you.
05:30 I literally want to bring you out of that.
05:31 So he comes to the point, were he finds
05:34 Christ for the first time, standing in the presence
05:36 of God for the first time.
05:37 And feels absolutely loved and accepted, wooed by God,
05:40 And I'm thinking, I've listened to this guy tell this
05:44 story and I can feel the Holy Spirit in him.
05:47 And I can feel the shock, almost in him, that I stood
05:50 in the presence of God loved.
05:52 And his journey out of that lifestyle was intense.
05:55 I'm telling you it was intense and was
05:57 not just an overnight thing.
05:58 It was just not a one-day thing.
06:00 But I watched this guy fall in love with Christ.
06:03 You know what I said to him?
06:04 I said man, I so can't wait.
06:08 He writes books, the guys a genius and had
06:10 some really good stuff.
06:13 I said I can't wait until you write this book.
06:15 And he looked at me and said, Cheri, and his wife
06:20 even said, we don't want anyone to know this.
06:24 So like, sorry I told the story.
06:26 But we don't want anybody to know that so we're
06:29 not going to write this book.
06:30 We are not going to put all this on the table.
06:34 When he said that my heart broke.
06:37 Do you know broke for?
06:38 Every single kid that has to struggle with this.
06:41 Every single person that has to look at this.
06:43 Every single person that is lost in this lifestyle
06:46 and dares to even think that maybe there is a God
06:49 that can help me, that doesn't have something
06:51 they can pick up and see that.
06:52 You see, know that they're people that have done this
06:55 journey before you and didn't feel any condemnation.
06:58 There are people that have stood up in Christ, and got
07:00 healing and literally to this point are walking out of that.
07:04 There are people that I know and love, that will tell
07:08 you how God has loved them in the most intimate
07:10 moments in their life.
07:12 Whether they were acting out and God just
07:15 showed up in said, you know what, I love you.
07:17 I love you so let's get into healing.
07:19 So I was devastated when he said he wouldn't share
07:23 this with anyone because he was afraid.
07:24 He was afraid of what people were going to do and
07:26 the judgment that was going to come to him.
07:28 I thought man, and his wife said something that
07:31 was funny, she's adorable.
07:32 She said, I just wanted to marry a pastor,
07:36 not a gay guy, you know what I mean?
07:39 I'm thinking, I'm thinking I can see her pain in that.
07:42 I wanted to marry a pastor and all of a sudden this
07:45 stuff unfolds, I just want healing and to be right now.
07:50 Let's not have to talk about it.
07:52 So on this show I'm just going to beg you,
07:56 if you never had any damage sexually.
08:00 If you have never been in those situations where you
08:03 have really gone all the way out in that direction,
08:06 just give us permission to explore it.
08:11 If you have, man, I want to tell you that isn't God cool!
08:16 The fact that He loves us, the fact that
08:20 none of our junk shocks Him.
08:22 You know, I can't wait.
08:24 The first people that I'm going to hang out with besides Christ,
08:27 when I'm in heaven, is Mary Magdalena and the demoniac.
08:29 I'm going to like Woo Hoo, can you believe we are here!
08:32 Do you know what I mean, I just want to tell them.
08:34 Can you believe we are sitting here with all these
08:37 cool folks that haven't been as trashed as us.
08:40 But we're sitting in the same place.
08:42 We're loved by the same God, in the same way, isn't He awesome?
08:47 I want to introduce you now to a friend of mine.
08:49 A recent friend of mine Ron, I want you to come back up
08:52 here, and Ron what was really incredible to me about
08:56 Ron Woolsey, Woolsey if I'm pronouncing the name right,
09:00 I never get it right.
09:01 Ron, you understand what I'm talking about.
09:05 You actually wrote a book on your journey.
09:08 Yes, but like that pastor, I didn't want to write a
09:12 book, in fact it was 9 years after my conversion
09:16 that I was asked to.
09:17 I have made a commitment to the Lord that wherever
09:20 I was asked to speak for Him I would, but I wasn't
09:22 going to just volunteer.
09:25 I was very timid.
09:26 And so tell me, because I don't think a lot of
09:29 people understand when you said, I literally
09:31 did not want to write it.
09:33 It wasn't that I wasn't going to come to the table
09:35 with this and just accept my healing and be grateful.
09:37 So why is it that you wouldn't write it,
09:39 what were you afraid of?
09:40 I think the Lord had His hand in that because when I
09:43 came into the faith and was called in to the Ministry,
09:45 what credibility when I have 1 year, 2 years.
09:50 In fact, there was an elder my own church that would
09:53 come to me and say Pastor Ron, I've never met anyone
09:57 like you that lasted more than 2 years in the church.
10:00 Because of the recovery?
10:01 Yeah, he said, you'll be back where you came from.
10:03 What kind of encouragement is that?
10:05 I finally wrote him a letter, it was a dear John letter.
10:08 His name was John - dear John don't talk to me again.
10:10 No! I said, dear John, you know instead of
10:13 standing on the sidelines waiting for me to fulfill
10:15 your prediction, why don't you lift me up
10:18 in prayer that I won't?
10:19 By the way it's been 2 years and I'm going on 3.
10:23 Well now it's been 16.
10:25 I never looked back, never went back.
10:28 When the Son set you free, you are free indeed.
10:31 So, I want you to tell us where did you come from?
10:33 LA - okay, good, good start.
10:37 No when I fell into that lifestyle I was right
10:43 out of college, I had a degree in theology.
10:45 Wow I didn't know that.
10:46 That's an amazing thing, but I think it is an important
10:50 detail to insert here because I think many people go
10:54 through college and are raised in Christian homes.
10:58 They just expect that everything will be Christian.
11:02 They will be like they're expected to be.
11:06 Going through college and graduating with honors,
11:09 with a degree in theology.
11:10 But having attractions to men throughout this time,
11:14 so it didn't just start then.
11:16 This was something that you had struggled with in your
11:19 life - Yes - long before college.
11:21 But I didn't have the understanding that I had later.
11:26 I've struggled with this issue since I was 4 years old.
11:31 Now that should tell you something.
11:33 What 4-year-old child should have any kind of
11:37 inclination toward sexuality?
11:39 So if I was struggling with same-sex attraction and
11:43 fantasizing all of this from the time I was 4 years old,
11:47 something happened when I was 4- Right - and it did.
11:51 I had to research my life and figure all that out.
11:55 I was robbed of my innocence at 4.
11:57 So when you say robbed of your innocence - that is a
12:01 nice way of saying, I was introduced to
12:04 perverted sexual behavior.
12:06 By a farm hand, and I was traumatized, but the victim
12:13 quite often feels, in fact usually feels responsible.
12:17 And even at 4 years old, Cheri, I felt that I had done
12:21 something wrong, - that I wanted this to happen.
12:23 But I would not go tattle to mommy and daddy,
12:26 because I had done something wrong.
12:28 And so that just festered in me all my life.
12:32 Like a nasty boil until it eventually erupted.
12:35 And when it did, there was no holds barred,
12:39 I mean there was no holding me back.
12:40 There was nothing anybody can say or do.
12:43 I wouldn't listen to anything, read anything, watch
12:46 anything, talk to anybody, it was over.
12:49 You had a Christian family that was trying to help.
12:52 Oh yes, but they have no idea what was going on.
12:54 I was a master at masking my, the contents of my mind.
13:00 I never let on that I was having that struggle.
13:03 I was struggling all alone.
13:05 And what was really interesting to me, as I was
13:08 going through the book that you wrote.
13:10 You even talked about going out and doing mission trips,
13:13 and hanging out with folks.
13:14 I was a spiritual child, a spiritual teenager.
13:17 I was valedictorian in the 8 grade and 12 grade.
13:20 At a Christian school?
13:21 Yes, I chose to go to a Christian schools myself.
13:25 I was a student missionary, but I was always plagued
13:27 by these thoughts and attractions.
13:30 I felt so contaminated because of my temptations.
13:35 You know Ron, I can't even imagine what you struggled
13:38 with that as a kid and how you must've felt like,
13:41 if they only knew.
13:42 Well I felt terribly guilty - even though - I just
13:49 I didn't know anyone like me.
13:51 I felt like was the only one in the world.
13:54 I knew better, but I never met anyone else that
13:58 was struggling with what I was struggling with.
14:00 I never knew who I could talk to, so I didn't.
14:02 I just totally internalized and that was my demise,
14:09 Now, had I at 4 years old had been able to go to
14:11 my parents and tell what happened, they could have
14:14 assured me that I was okay - and that shame wouldn't have
14:17 been laid on you.
14:18 That's right, and I could've been healed at the age of
14:21 4, and I could've had a normal life, I believe.
14:24 That was a step, there were many factors involved,
14:27 it is not any one thing, but that was a step.
14:29 So now you said you were in college, you're doing
14:34 this whole theology thing.
14:35 Are you acting out at this point?
14:38 No, no, I never - you still - oh no, I was going
14:42 to do the right thing.
14:43 I wanted to be right with God and my fellow man.
14:47 In fact, I married a student missionary that I had
14:50 worked with in Korea.
14:52 You know, I thought I was an intelligent person,
14:58 but this is just such poor reasoning.
15:01 I thought if I just got married, it would take care
15:04 of all the sexual compulsion that I feel.
15:08 It would be sexual release, and I would be fine.
15:13 I did that to that poor woman and she was a nice
15:17 lady, young lady, a good Christian.
15:19 I married her for the solution, but Jesus is the
15:24 solution not marriage.
15:25 You know what is really interesting is that your heart
15:28 you were desperate to be right.
15:30 I wanted to be right, but I had no answers.
15:33 Because I didn't talk to anyone, see I didn't know
15:35 where to go so I didn't.
15:36 That was - when you got married, realizing that
15:41 was not the answer.
15:42 But I'm still plagued by this and now I'm
15:45 plagued with realizing what I did to you,
15:47 because I'm not connecting with you.
15:49 Oh yes and we had two children, and that was my plan
15:55 also because that would occupy my wife, keep her busy
16:01 and keep me from having to be so attentive to her.
16:05 It was a terrible thing that I did to her, but I didn't
16:07 know, I didn't plan to do that.
16:09 But as we were married, I just develop more and more of
16:12 an aversion, realizing this is not who I am.
16:16 This is who I am and I don't know what to do about it.
16:20 I thought it was just born this way, I didn't connect
16:24 the dots at that point.
16:25 So I just thought - you know, and I'm so horrible and
16:28 I just want to say, I'm so horrible and I want to say
16:31 again, you weren't acting out.
16:33 Cause I wanted to say how did you not act out.
16:36 Can we get a lie detector test?
16:37 No, I'm sorry - bring it on.
16:41 Okay, you know what I wanted to say is that
16:42 must've been for most people, like this pastor
16:44 I was talked about.
16:45 He was acting out all over, then condemning himself.
16:48 From the age of 14, when somebody tweaked his whole
16:51 sexuality, he would act out and feel even worse.
16:55 But you are saying, I literally fought this
16:57 and didn't act out - I fought it tooth and nail,
16:59 but I found myself fantasizing,
17:01 I acted out in my mind, then I felt terribly guilty
17:05 from that, because I fought it, I mean,
17:08 I fought it all my life.
17:09 I did not want to go there.
17:11 It came to a point where I finally just gave up and
17:15 said, this is who I am.
17:17 I'm not being true to my wife, to my family, to myself.
17:20 In my going to live the rest of my life in this agony,
17:23 misery and living a lie.
17:25 Did you ever feel, because that is such a hopeless
17:30 place to be in, did you ever feel like, you know what
17:34 just take me out, I'm just done.
17:35 I loved life, I was never suicidal.
17:38 Never did, good for you.
17:40 I never wanted to end it, I wanted a good life.
17:45 Yes, I wanted help, but I didn't dare ask for it.
17:49 I felt that people would sneer at me - can I just take
17:54 that for a minute?
17:55 Great shock and go, what!
17:57 Can I just say for a minute, I really mean this.
17:59 You know, we have many different issues.
18:03 This is just one where people are dying to come
18:05 honestly to someone in the church, to the church itself
18:10 and just be able to say, I'm struggling with this.
18:12 Can you help me?
18:14 But we are so afraid that if I do come up, I will be
18:17 shunned for the rest of my life and that would totally,
18:19 really be alone.
18:21 And sometimes, I want to plead with the churches,
18:24 we got to get over ourselves.
18:25 Oh yes, and I have to tell you when I was in that life
18:30 in Florida, Fort Lauderdale, you know all the gay Mecca's
18:34 And in Southern California, Palm Springs - because you
18:37 jumped into that life at that point.
18:38 When I had my first experience, that was it.
18:41 I mean I was addicted from that first experience - Especially as
18:45 you set your mind up all all those years fantasizing too.
18:48 I knew once that happened I said, though I hate it, this
18:52 is just who I am.
18:53 But you know, Cheri, when I was in the world all those
18:56 years I continually met young people, or people that
19:00 would say to me that if I knew there was any other way
19:04 I would never be gay.
19:05 That is why I'm in the Ministry I am in now, because I
19:09 realize I am not the only one that had the struggle.
19:11 There are many, I mean, there is a large percentage of
19:16 gay people that are defending it, they are militant,
19:19 they are proud of it, and they are celebrating it,
19:22 promoting it and brainwashing people with it.
19:25 But even if it is a small minority, God loves
19:29 those people and He does not want to live
19:31 throughout eternity without them.
19:33 I am finding around the world through my
19:35 website Ministry - that people want to stand up
19:37 that people out as they read
19:39 my book and hear my story.
19:42 They say, I too can be whole.
19:44 And they come forward.
19:46 You know, we all can do that with our testimony.
19:50 Revelation 12:11 says, "we can overcome the accuser
19:52 of the brethren by the blood of the Lamb, and by the
19:56 word of our testimony. "
19:57 But you know, how did you come out?
20:01 Cause right now from your story, you are in the middle
20:04 of all this kind of stuff.
20:05 You are like an alcoholic that has walked away from
20:10 every thing you know into this lifestyle.
20:11 How long did that period of your life last and
20:14 how did you come out?
20:15 That lasted 16 years, and I went into it very bitter,
20:20 because as I realized who I really was - and can I
20:24 just say, you are an incredible piano player, you have
20:27 have theology, you've done special music at church,
20:29 you preach and all that kind of stuff.
20:31 So you literally when you jumped in that lifestyle,
20:34 you had this incredible talented giftings that you
20:40 took into that lifestyle and used in that lifestyle.
20:43 So how did you stand up?
20:44 It was like being born again, but the wrong way.
20:48 There was nothing in my present life at that time
20:51 that I could carry into the new one.
20:53 I turned my back on religion, I squandered the beautiful
20:57 family, the Lord had given me, and there was nothing
21:00 I could do with the music because I had been raised and
21:02 trained in church music.
21:04 So - that would kind of squash, a party.
21:07 What does a musician do, I had music in my
21:09 bones, so I took up dancing, became a dance instructor.
21:12 And then all those 16 years I was a dancer.
21:14 That way, I was always around music, but it was the
21:17 Devils music and devils dancing and all that.
21:20 But that is how I filled that void in my life.
21:23 My life turned 180 degrees the opposite direction
21:26 totally from where I had been prior to that.
21:29 Now you are in that lifestyle, did you have multiple
21:35 partners or just a partner that you - I wanted to
21:38 be married, I wanted a relationship,
21:42 I didn't want to be tricking.
21:44 I didn't want to spend my life, flitting from flower
21:47 to flower, tricking, but to get to Mr. right
21:50 you have to flit.
21:53 So there were too many times I was going from person
22:00 to person, until Mr. Right came along.
22:03 So we were together for 3 years.
22:07 With your personality type and your character that
22:11 was hard too, because I don't want to just be
22:13 out here with everybody.
22:15 I wanted to be as normal as possible.
22:17 In an abnormal lifestyle, the abnormal lifestyle was
22:20 killing you, so again, how did you come back?
22:24 Well I have to back up just a little bit.
22:28 I went through my divorce.
22:30 My wife and I, I did consent to go to some
22:34 counseling - cause you had to tell her this is
22:36 what you were struggling with?
22:38 As soon as I had that first experience, right after
22:43 that I told her, because I didn't want to live a lie,
22:46 I didn't want to be a hypocrite.
22:47 I wasn't going to be a pastor with that, that in
22:50 my life, so I told her and bless her heart she did
22:54 everything to try to help me and turn me around.
22:59 and to cooperate, she didn't just want to walk
23:03 away she loved me.
23:04 So I consented to go to some counseling, and I went
23:07 to pastors, counselors, and psychiatrists,
23:09 all religious ones.
23:11 I don't need to name the denomination do I?
23:13 In the end Cheri, they almost all counseled with her
23:19 and said, you know, you need to divorce this man
23:21 and get on with his life, that kind can never change.
23:24 That was Christian counseling.
23:28 That is the way I felt, but I was very hurt by that and
23:33 it left me in the world as bitter and angry because God
23:35 could help Cheri, but He couldn't help me.
23:38 He could help an heroine addict, porno addict.
23:41 and your question was, how did I come back.
23:44 Well, I did not go to any pastor, or counselor, or
23:49 psychiatrist, I wonder why?
23:51 I had already been there, and they couldn't help me.
23:53 I had a degree in theology and a lot of knowledge,
23:56 but what I had realized I had studied all those years
23:59 to answer the questions of the professors.
24:01 I had stopped studying to answer my soul questions.
24:06 Now say that again.
24:07 I studied to pass the tests, I answered the questions of
24:11 the professors, and I didn't have time to answer my own
24:14 questions through the Word of God.
24:16 That's how I lost my relationship, that's how I fell.
24:18 You know, for somebody watching right now, I want you
24:22 to repeat is that when you are in a place and you're really
24:26 stuck, is to pick up the Word of God to answer
24:29 those personal questions.
24:30 Like you were saying, you had read the
24:33 Bible through to pass a test.
24:35 Now you have to pick it up again and say what's this got
24:38 from a life - that's what I did and when I give a full-blown
24:42 testimony, I talk about this Left Behind Series I had.
24:45 My parents loved me unconditionally, very important.
24:48 They prayed for me without ceasing.
24:50 They became very forgetful, they would come all the way
24:54 across the country to visit me from time to time.
24:56 Every time they went home they left something behind -
24:58 They are like oh my goodness He's gay?
24:59 Oh! I thought forgetful in that way.
25:02 No! no, they left something behind.
25:04 They knew that they couldn't get me to read or watch
25:07 or listen or talk, so they would leave something behind.
25:09 Under my pillow, on my bed, on the back of the toilet,
25:12 here and there.
25:13 Good for them.
25:14 These were tokens of love, and I didn't have the heart
25:16 to throw them away, but I had no use for them.
25:18 Interestingly, they all had a note to me in them,
25:20 and I collected them over the years.
25:23 I ended up with a complete Left Behind Series,
25:26 And it was not Tim LaHayes either
25:29 It was before Tim LaHaye ever came on the scene.
25:32 But I had - I love that - I had a wonderful
25:34 library and so there was the little garden
25:37 sitting there just waiting.
25:38 When the Lord really was able to work on my heart,
25:41 then like I said I didn't go to the counselors,
25:45 I went to the Word and to my knees.
25:48 I studied for my very life, and I found all of my
25:53 answers, well in this book.
25:55 Show us some stuff that you found.
25:57 Well - Steps To Christ, we went through that for
25:59 our first season, so it is an incredible book.
26:02 This is a funny story, and I will
26:04 try to make it real brief.
26:05 I was such - I like funny, long stories.
26:06 Yes, but we don't have time for that one so.
26:09 I was, my mind was just mush, from watching TV.
26:16 I was a TV addict, I was an addictive person.
26:19 So I went to the Left Behind Series to pull out
26:23 something to read, I tried with the Bible.
26:26 It was too heavy, and I put it back.
26:29 I couldn't concentrate on it.
26:30 But I found this book, and I pulled it out and I
26:33 thought, if I'm going to read I'm going to have to
26:35 relax, because I hadn't read anything in 16 years
26:38 of any substance so I went to the kitchen, pulled out my
26:41 blender poured in some yellow stuff and green stuff and ice
26:44 and blended it all up together and got out the bag of salt.
26:46 And I rimmed my glass and came back in with my great
26:50 big midori margarita.
26:52 I set down with that and lit up a cigarette.
26:54 This is someone who had a degree in theology,
26:58 and I knew better, but it had been 16 years and I sat
27:01 down and started reading page one of Steps To Christ.
27:05 I was drinking and smoking, and I thought there's
27:07 something wrong with this picture.
27:09 So it's not even what was said, it's just like you,
27:11 the picture was just - no, I'm reading in the Word
27:13 of God and I'm smoking and drinking.
27:15 And I thought, you know, and I had a little talk with
27:17 God and I said, God I didn't leave You over cigarettes,
27:20 I've only done that for 3 years.
27:22 I didn't leave You over alcohol, didn't know anything
27:25 about alcohol until after I left You.
27:27 That is not my problem.
27:28 So I sipped and smoked and said I'm going to keep
27:31 reading until You tell me what's really wrong.
27:34 And in this book it is on page 32.
27:37 I want share this little paragraph.
27:39 It was a turning point in my experience, as I read this.
27:43 It says, "God does not require us to give up anything
27:47 that it is for our best interest to retain. "
27:50 "In all He does, He has the well-being of
27:54 His children in view. "
27:55 "Would that all who have not chosen Christ might realize that
28:00 He has something vastly better to offer them than they
28:04 are seeking for themselves. "
28:06 Wow - I reached over and put out my cigarette, I could
28:10 no longer read the Word of God and smoke and drink.
28:13 And here I had been living this self gratification life
28:16 for 16 years.
28:18 It suddenly dawned on me, what Christ has to offer far
28:21 exceeds anything that I can even imagine.
28:23 How stupid can I be! His way is better!
28:27 We are going to break on this whole stupid thing.
28:29 We will come back to find out, don't answer that
28:33 question, so we are going to take a break and
28:36 I want you to come back because for one
28:37 this journey is incredible, the fact that God, He doesn't
28:41 say you change and get right and then I'll have you open
28:45 the Word of God and come back to Me.
28:47 He just says, in the middle of what ever, if you have
28:49 any inclination to even turn to Me in prayer, grab
28:52 something that somebody has left behind.
28:54 To really open up the scriptures again and find out some
28:56 answers for yourself, for what is going on in your life.
28:58 He just says, just come.
29:01 I have a friend that used to smoke weed.
29:04 And he was just smoking weed and studying the Bible.
29:07 He said he didn't feel good enough to come to church,
29:10 so he would just study the Bible.
29:11 And he said, one day he is studying, and I was having
29:14 Cheri, the most incredible time with God when the ash
29:19 from the joint just fell on the Bible and burned a hole
29:22 in the page.
29:23 And he looked at me, just like, and I said wow,
29:27 what did you do?
29:28 He said, I immediately switched to a pipe,
29:30 and I'm thinking, how cute is that.
29:33 That we come to God, we don't even know,
29:36 smoking weed and doing Bible studies may
29:39 not be the best or been so out there.
29:43 I have another friend, a Meth addict, when he would get
29:45 so high on Meth and speeding out for 4 or 5 days.
29:51 He would have Bible studies at his house.
29:52 So, I think God says, you know what I don't care.
29:56 Not that I don't care your strung out, not that I don't
29:59 care that you are lost in your addictions, but whatever
30:01 it takes to get you to just opened this book.
30:04 Start looking for answers in this book or praying to
30:08 Me and I will literally walk you into recovery.
30:10 We are going to take a break.
30:12 I want you to come back, because I want to introduce
30:16 you to some are friends of mine who have joined us for
30:18 this show, for this topic.
30:20 Stay with us!