“I’m grateful everyday that I wake up.”

“I go by a new name now,” says Rex, a recent graduate of our Life Recovery Program. “Resurrected Rex,” as he refers to himself today, describes perfectly the transformation that has taken place in his life since coming to the Mission.

At age 28, he surrendered to the Lord and gave up the destructive behaviors he had developed over the years as a way of coping with the hurt and hardships he experienced as a child. From the age of 7, he took on the responsibility of caring for his younger siblings while his mother and stepfather worked, and he endured painful attacks by bullies who mocked him.

As he grew older, he began fighting back, encouraged by the only people who seemed to be on his side. “I found love in a gang, because I didn’t have it at home,” he says. When his actions divided his family, he left… at only 15.

Now on his own, he relied on street smarts to survive. Drug abuse and the illicit actions required to support his habit soon dominated his life. Finally, knowing the path he was on would only end in incarceration, he turned to the Mission.

Our faith-based program of recovery, advocacy and job training is what drew Rex to our doors. He had felt the Lord’s presence early on in his life but didn’t respond to it. “It wasn’t until I came to the Mission that I was actually introduced to Christ,” he explains. “And when I surrendered to Him, I began to see the blessings come.”

One of those blessings, he shares, is Brad Vander Heyden, owner of Advanced Chimney Systems, whom he met at a Mission event. Brad was so moved by Rex’s story and godly demeanor that he offered him a job when he graduated.

Today, Rex is employed as a fireplace technician, doing installation and repair work. He has his own home and is a member of Heartland Church, where he volunteers with Celebrate Recovery. He also continues to be part of our Mission family. “I’m grateful for all the blessings that have been bestowed on me, and I can’t do it without God and the Mission,” he says. “That’s why I’m staying connected and reaching out to others now.”

With a heart of Thanksgiving, Rex shares these words with Mission partners like you: “I’m very grateful God is using you to help others. Without you, there wouldn’t be hope for someone like me.” Thank you for your gift today and continued generosity.

To read our most recent issue of The Rescuerclick here.