Celebrating Life in Recovery

Gangs To Fatherhood

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Cheri Peters (Host), Reginald & Marquand Buchanan


Series Code: CLR

Program Code: CLR00077A

00:11 Welcome to Celebrating Life In Recovery,
00:12 I'm Cheri your host.
00:14 It matters what we decide, either generational blessings
00:17 or generational cursing's and we are going to look at
00:20 that today in this one incredible family.
00:22 So join us in the café and it will be fun.
00:52 Welcome back, so we are talking about generational
00:56 curses or blessings and it is really interesting,
01:00 I looked in Deuteronomy and it talked about
01:02 the decisions of someone.
01:04 Whether it is an addict, or someone who is out to lunch
01:08 as far as anger, or rage, or addictions of any kind,
01:11 is that they literally can bring this whole thing into their
01:14 life, into their families life, and their children bring
01:17 it into their children's life and it is just this curse
01:20 that happens, and sometimes it happens for the Bible
01:23 sometimes talks about two or three generations.
01:26 There are some places where talks about 10 or 20
01:29 generations, but what you do right now will lay out this
01:33 whole thing for your family.
01:34 So I'm going to introduce you to a family, or a man that
01:38 decided to change all that.
01:40 I love that about you Reginald, I want to say thank you
01:43 so much for being on the program.
01:45 I loved when I was in Arkansas doing some prison
01:48 ministries and I met you and your family and worked with
01:52 some of the people that you do prison ministries with.
01:55 So I want to say thanks for coming on, thanks for sharing
01:58 your testimony, and I would just say let's start and talk
02:02 about where you come from and how you got to where
02:06 you're at right now.
02:07 Well Cheri I came from a very broken home.
02:11 It was just my mom and my dad, he was never there.
02:17 She did eventually marry, but my stepdad he was a very
02:24 heavy drinker as well and both of them drank.
02:26 So your biological dad was just gone?
02:30 He was just gone. - he never hung out?
02:33 No, if anything I always longed for that relationship
02:36 with him but I never had it.
02:39 There were times where I actually communicated with him,
02:43 but he didn't show any interest in me, yeah!
02:48 You felt that really young, you felt this guy really
02:51 doesn't care. - yes!
02:53 When I say that I think that there is a part of me that
02:58 understands, a child works really hard to get something,
03:01 give me something and when you get nothing you know that.
03:05 - yes exactly!
03:07 So your step dad was a drinker?
03:09 Yes and heavy drinker, and him and my mom were always
03:12 fussing and fighting stuff like that.
03:15 So I found a big retreat by going out in the backyard
03:18 and playing all by myself.
03:20 So that was your childhood? - yes, that was my childhood.
03:25 Just coming up, one thing about it there was a sweet old
03:30 Lady that my mom worked for and she would always take
03:35 time out and carry us to church.
03:37 My mom, she would drink all night long and stuff like
03:41 that, so she wasn't able to take us to church.
03:45 She would have a hangover or something like that.
03:49 This is the old lady say can I take the kids to church?
03:53 - so excuse me while I just tell someone in the
03:56 audience, you know what, did you hear that?
03:58 I love that because that happen with my sisters too.
04:01 Somebody came and picked them up, just said let me take the
04:06 kids, I'm not going to hassle you, you don't have to
04:08 worry about it, I'll take them and bring them back.
04:10 I will make sure they eat, and you had someone do that
04:13 for you and so I have to say God bless her.
04:16 It probably didn't make a difference right away.
04:20 Well right away I felt, it was a good experience going
04:24 to church, there were some people there that cared,
04:30 but coming back to the home and I didn't see this being
04:36 lived out in the home.
04:37 It was very hard for me, I was getting a good feeling in
04:41 church and meeting great people, but when I come home it
04:45 was the same fussing and fighting and drinking.
04:50 - did you jump into drinking, did you do all that?
04:53 Well one thing about it, not off the bat.
04:57 There was a time when I would bring things home from
05:01 school to present my mom about her drinking, that
05:05 drinking was bad for your health and stuff like that.
05:09 It was very convicting to her and she would just say,
05:13 she would get sad and walk off or something like that.
05:16 Not right off. - like mom don't smoke don't drink,
05:20 don't do any of that stuff. - exactly!
05:23 I would bring literature from school to her.
05:26 Did you believe if she stopped drinking you have a mom?
05:29 Deep down inside that is what I believe.
05:32 Sometimes I think people think that you did that to get
05:35 her health back, a lot of times for kids from abuse,
05:37 because my parents were addicts and I knew she could just
05:40 stop she could love me.
05:42 I don't think it was all about health, it was just the
05:45 relationship that I wanted, yeah.
05:48 To this day I still want that, it stays with us,
05:53 it really stays with us.
05:55 So then what happened?
05:57 Like I said later in my life I wasn't drinking right off,
06:02 I started a roundabout high school.
06:05 I was against drinking and all that, drugs all that but
06:10 in high school it seemed like the very things I was against
06:14 I started to become attracted to it.
06:17 I didn't understand it, yeah I started drinking in high
06:22 school and I tried marijuana and that's when things started
06:26 to spin out of control.
06:28 Right, because you fit in with the group?
06:30 Well, I guess I wanted to fit in.
06:34 - for a lot of people, they do not understand the
06:37 draw of that, it is not necessarily to draw on the
06:40 drugs, in fact you are repulsed at the drugs at first,
06:42 but I want to fit in somewhere.
06:44 I want to belong to something. - that is right!
06:46 So you ended up fitting in?
06:49 Yes, I'm fitting in very good, I was doing a whole
06:53 lot of things, actually I was getting drunk and passing out.
06:58 Everybody would laugh and I just felt accepted.
07:05 So how but any law stuff, did you get in trouble with
07:08 the law or any of that? Did you get to finish school?
07:11 Most the time drugs and alcohol interfere with all that.
07:16 Well I actually dropped out for while and then my mom
07:20 she gave me a little pep talk and stuff like that.
07:23 She was like you should finish school, stuff like that.
07:27 So I got back in and finished for her sake, you know.
07:30 But getting in trouble with the law and stuff like that
07:34 came later because when I was introduced to drugs,
07:39 I was also longing for that father figure.
07:44 I wanted to belong to something, I wanted that father
07:47 figure and later on in my life...
07:50 - there is an incredible emptiness when you don't have
07:55 that, even as is interesting to me is there is not enough
07:59 drugs to cover-up for that stuff.
08:02 I think that is why God counsels so much in the Bible
08:05 to take care of your kids, love them and don't provoke
08:09 them, and I think He does that because when we get empty,
08:13 in those places, we're empty.
08:15 - that is a right, exactly!
08:17 I was very empty and I didn't know this was going to take
08:21 a toll on me, but I really wanted that relationship,
08:24 is specially with him, with my father.
08:28 My mom was there and she did a whole lot of things for
08:31 me, but that relationship with him, I wanted that.
08:35 You would see kids even at school come up with both of
08:38 their parents and stuff like that and I would sit there
08:41 and stare, I wanted that relationship with my father.
08:46 - so did you ever find with people that were using,
08:50 did you ever find that father figure there?
08:53 Well, not with that, it was a different group that I found
08:57 the father figure, yeah and that was a gang.
09:01 You know I love when you said that Reginald because a
09:05 lot people don't realize that a gang becomes a family.
09:09 It is not that you are just acting out, drinking, or using,
09:12 or selling our what ever, this is my family.
09:14 This is where I fit and then you start defending them
09:17 as much as you would defend your family.
09:19 So talk about what that was like for you?
09:22 Well when I got introduced to this gang, this gang was
09:27 called The Crypt gang.
09:29 It was all having fun, going out and committing crimes,
09:35 we started off bursting windows out of cars just for the
09:40 fun of it, we will go down to where there may be having
09:43 a show somewhere, or something like that where there was
09:46 a lot of cars parked and we would go out there and just
09:49 break windows and stuff like that.
09:50 That was fun, we would run off.
09:52 The guys that were in this gang they would surround you,
09:56 they will put their arms around me and welcome me in.
10:01 You had been looking for that your whole life?
10:04 My whole life. - people do not get a sense of that, do they?
10:07 My whole life I've been looking for someone
10:09 to say I am glad you are here.
10:11 You don't have to play in the backyard by yourself
10:13 anymore, you don't have to be alone anymore,
10:15 we want you here. - exactly!
10:18 All my life that was what I was looking for, and it seem
10:22 like I finally found love, what I thought was love.
10:25 - isn't that crazy? And the worst thing you can do,
10:28 it is better for them.
10:29 If I could bust out all these windows, if I could do
10:32 whatever, everybody is laughing.
10:34 All that anger, all at hurt and stuff, every time you
10:37 break a window and hear that glass shatter it feels good.
10:41 Yes, it felt good, and it didn't, like I say
10:45 it escalated, it went from breaking windows to actually
10:49 starting fights and fighting and stuff like that.
10:50 - a serious fighting? - yeah we would pick fights,
10:54 we would go to the movies just to pick fights.
10:57 We would see couples and would pick fights with the guy.
11:03 Just for the fun of it, yeah.
11:08 That is where for you, if you don't do that you are
11:12 not accepted, if you do, you get almost addicted to the
11:16 adrenaline of it, so you really are spinning
11:19 out of control. - yes, and I didn't see it.
11:23 Did anybody at that time try to help?
11:26 Well my mom, she would actually warn me of the
11:31 group I was hanging around.
11:33 At this time she had stopped drinking, yeah she had
11:36 stopped drinking, she had an encounter where she said the
11:40 Lord was speaking to her about the drinking.
11:43 She straightened up, she didn't drink and I didn't see
11:46 her drinking anymore, but she would tell me from time to
11:51 time, Reggie, you need to choose, be very careful of the
11:55 friends that you choose to hang around with.
11:58 By then you are like, don't talk to me about any of that.
12:01 That is where it is really tough, my whole life I have
12:03 been trying to get you to see me and
12:05 now you're going to teach me?
12:06 It is really tough at that point because the people that
12:10 could have spoken to your life you don't give them any
12:14 chance to speak anymore. - not any chance.
12:17 Everything she would say, I would just ignore it.
12:19 If she'd say go left, I will go right, yeah.
12:22 Just because, how dare you. How dare you do it now.
12:26 - just exactly.
12:28 - so what happened because you said at one point the law
12:31 did come into the picture and you started getting in
12:35 trouble in that area.
12:36 Yes, yes there were times where we were actually fighting
12:42 and the police were called out and by that time they've
12:48 would come and take us to jail.
12:50 I have went to jail several times for just fighting,
12:54 out in the open, just street fighting.
12:55 - do you know what's funny about that?
12:57 This is normal people are not going to understand this at all,
12:59 but going to jail in that environment is actually a good
13:03 thing because now you are the guy.
13:06 For a lot of people who do not realize, that is part of
13:12 the whole picture, people will laugh about that later.
13:17 It is no big deal, you are out in no time.
13:19 All my life I wanted to be somebody, all of a sudden now
13:23 I'm somebody, these guys I was hanging around they was,
13:28 oh Man you went to jail, oh man that officer you was
13:32 pushing and shoving on him.
13:34 We would just talk about these things and how we were
13:37 committing crimes and stuff like that and it felt good.
13:40 - because you were somebody! - I was somebody, finally.
13:43 The reason I want you to say that out loud is that
13:49 I think sometimes people need to know that kind of pain,
13:54 where you come from, really grows up into this horrible
13:58 acting out because I just have to be seen, I just have to be
14:02 heard and it is really even tough to jump out of that.
14:07 How do you get out of that because now my only identity
14:12 is that I'm a criminal, a gang member, I'm in your face,
14:16 I could care less about anything, how does God reach
14:20 someone like that? How did He reach you?
14:22 Well Cheri, my mom she never gave up praying.
14:27 She was praying for me for a long time and I believe she
14:30 knew that she was the cause of some of it.
14:34 She would always pray for me.
14:36 So she had a lot of guilt that she was trying
14:38 to deal with too. - Yes!
14:40 From time to time she would talk to me and tell me that
14:44 she loved me and that I needed to change.
14:46 She was hearing many bad things about me and she was afraid
14:51 I was going to be killed.
14:52 So that actually started sinking in a little bit,
14:57 I didn't want to die or anything like that.
15:00 I started thinking about some of the things
15:04 she was saying, yeah, yeah.
15:06 It just started to get to you?
15:08 - yeah, it was getting to me heavy.
15:11 Then what happened?
15:12 After that I think one night, I would always get in
15:17 trouble as I got older, when I get in trouble or
15:21 something like that I would lose everything,
15:25 my mom would always welcome me back home to help me
15:29 out and start all over again.
15:31 She didn't say you're not coming back to this house,
15:34 in fact she said the opposite, please come back.
15:37 She said that and I came back home, but I was so full
15:43 of rage, one night there was a fight, I got into a fight
15:48 right in front of my mom's yard with this guy.
15:52 She seen right then, Reggie you need to change.
15:56 Me and this guy got into an altercation in I was so in a
15:59 rage that she couldn't calm me down and stuff like that.
16:02 When people say, in a rage or a fight,
16:06 those are almost life and death fights.
16:10 When you are in a gang situation, all the boundaries of
16:14 what you would have normally done, are gone.
16:17 If I had to take you out, I will take you out.
16:19 Yeah, that's exactly... - what she saw.
16:21 What I was trying to do that guy that night,
16:23 I was trying to take him out right there in her yard.
16:26 If I had had some weapon or something like that,
16:30 I very well would have taken him out.
16:32 She actually came between us and told me, look you're
16:36 going to have to change, you're going to have change
16:40 your life and it didn't stop right there.
16:43 I did not listen right then, but that was another time
16:46 out there, maybe two weeks later.
16:49 Where I was actually fussing with a girlfriend of mine.
16:54 I was fussing and we got to a point where it got
16:58 physical right in her house.
17:01 My mom said enough is enough, so she called the
17:05 authorities, she called the police. - on you? - yeah.
17:08 - She didn't know what else to do?
17:10 Yeah, exactly. This actually was leading to the turning
17:13 point, because when the police were called I can remember
17:17 saying mom, how can you call the police on your own son?
17:21 She looked at me and said, you know Reggie, my son was
17:24 filled with love at one time, at one time.
17:27 She said I don't know what you have become, then she
17:32 uttered the words Reggie love is the key.
17:35 Love, you know, so.
17:38 Did that get to you? It's such a huge thing.
17:41 At one time my son was filled with love.
17:44 Yes, yes and Cheri.
17:47 - That kid bringing home his health talks to save his
17:51 mother, and she remembers that boy, she's like what
17:54 happened to him. - that is what she was saying.
17:57 So that time, I have been to jail several times, but this
18:01 time was different, even the officer that took me to jail
18:06 with actually ministering to me in such a way.
18:09 So that was strange and odd but that night all I can hear
18:14 is my mom's words, love is the key.
18:17 So I wondered how can I find love?
18:19 I remember back when I was going to church, when I had
18:23 the Steps to Christ at an early age.
18:26 - that old woman was taking you.
18:28 - yeah when that little lady was taking me,
18:30 so I actually got down, I have prayed a few times,
18:35 but this time I wanted to change.
18:38 This time I knew that I was the problem, all the other
18:42 times I would blame the authorities, I would blame
18:46 everybody else except me.
18:48 - I'm innocent. - yeah exactly, that's what I was
18:51 saying, I was innocent.
18:53 But this particular night, when my mom called the police,
18:57 I knew I had a problem, so I got down on my knees and
19:01 actually raised my hands up just like I would when the
19:05 police would come and I would surrender.
19:07 That's what I did, I threw my hands up and said,
19:10 Lord I surrender it to You.
19:12 - the surrendering was to God.
19:14 Yeah, yeah I was surrendering to the Lord.
19:17 A lot of inmates that were there, they were looking
19:20 like what's wrong with this guy?
19:22 You know I had hit rock bottom I was in jail and my mom
19:26 was the one that called so right then and there
19:30 I asked the Lord, could you please change me
19:33 and come into my heart.
19:35 So for people, that place, even in my own life that was
19:39 such a holy place to be where you finally say to God,
19:43 what ever it takes I can't do this a minute longer.
19:47 I don't want to breathe a minute longer without You
19:51 taking control, because I can't do it.
19:53 Look what I've done with my life.
19:55 When you did that, did you get a sense, not an audible
19:59 voice or whatever, but did you get a sense that
20:01 God spoke into your life?
20:03 Yeah, He spoke, it is hard to describe exactly the
20:07 speaking, but He spoke to my heart.
20:10 It was like, I'm going to save you, but the thing is
20:14 if you go back out there it can be disastrous,
20:19 it can be death and that was what God was speaking to me.
20:25 So He is sort of telling you to stay in jail?
20:28 You know if you go back into the world and doing the
20:33 things I was doing, yeah.
20:35 - I'm very concrete on thinking He was telling you to
20:37 stay in jail but He's just saying, don't, you're going to
20:40 have to change, major changes.
20:41 You're going to have to make a major change, yeah.
20:46 So when I got out of jail, I knew the Lord was serious
20:50 about what He had spoke to me because that guy that I had
20:54 the altercation with, one day I was out in the yard.
20:59 I had went back and gave my life to Christ and went
21:03 to church and everything and about a week later
21:06 I was struggling with wanting to drink, wanting to go
21:11 and get me a drink.
21:12 I was out in the yard debating on whether I should go
21:15 and get drink or not, Cheri that guy I had an altercation
21:18 with he came up and stopped the car and
21:21 jumped out of the car.
21:22 - ready to fight again?
21:23 Yes, but this time he had a weapon.
21:26 Right then I felt my heart just dropped.
21:31 He just ran up to me and looked me in the eyes and I
21:35 couldn't think of nothing at the time, but the words came
21:39 to me, I just said, look could you just hold for second
21:44 before you do what you came to do.
21:46 I just want to tell you that I'm sorry for the things
21:49 I did, I'm very sorry.
21:51 I said I have accepted the Lord in my life and I am very
21:55 sorry, and it shocked him.
21:59 I saw a tear started coming out of his eyes and he took
22:03 off and ran and jumped in the car.
22:06 Because he knew from the Holy Spirit, he knew that you
22:09 were serious, I'm not playing you, I'm not trying to get
22:11 out of anything, I'm telling you that my life
22:13 is different right now.
22:15 - exactly. - if I could take all this back,
22:17 I would take it all back. - exactly.
22:19 Back to the words that was spoken from the Lord to my
22:23 heart, that if you go back out there, in the world,
22:26 you can die out there.
22:29 Cheri, if I had had a drink or something like that it
22:33 would have been easy for me just to call him any type
22:37 of names. - and he would have pulled the gun and said,
22:40 you're done. - he would just kills me, yeah.
22:43 Instead, instead which is amazing, instead of that your
22:47 life began to really turn.
22:50 Tell us a little bit about what, you ended up back in
22:53 church, you ended up getting baptized, you ended up doing
22:55 all that stuff, what did that look like for you?
22:59 Well actually when I got back in church, like I said,
23:03 - because people knew you too.
23:06 They knew me yeah, there was times when we were, I would
23:09 go out and shop and people would just look and say is
23:12 this the same guy, when I was in a suit, looking like
23:16 this can't be the same guy.
23:18 People would stop me and stare and stuff like that.
23:21 But one thing I want to tell you, that girlfriend that
23:23 I had a fight with, that was my wife.
23:27 - no way! As I know her then, so she hung in there
23:32 through your change?
23:33 - She hung in there, yeah, she actually moved back to
23:35 Orlando and then she came back.
23:38 A phone call we had and I was telling her that I had
23:42 given my life to Christ and she came back.
23:45 So you guys ended up getting married?
23:47 Yeah we ended up getting married.
23:49 We talked about, when I opened the show, we were talking
23:52 about generational curses or blessings.
23:54 You had literally given God permission to come into your
23:59 life, into your children's life, you had how many
24:03 children with her? - 6- 6 children.
24:06 I'm telling you they are amazing, amazing.
24:10 I will go ahead and break, when I come back I want to
24:15 introduce the audience in the café to one of your sons.
24:19 Then at the end of the program I'm going to bring the
24:23 whole family in because I would really love to hear
24:26 from his wife, this change.
24:28 I want you to see what happens when one person decides to
24:32 change, says I am not going to go down that same path.
24:35 I'm not going to do that same life, I'm going to trust
24:39 God that He has a plan for me and Reginald did that.
24:43 It literally brought about a change that is absolutely
24:47 amazing, so I want you to meet his kids and you to see
24:51 the whole family and we'll talk a little bit with
24:53 his wife at the end.
24:54 So stay with us, we'll be right back!


Revised 2014-12-17