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Paul came to New Beginnings after spending 20 years in prison. His grandmothers were both believers and planted seeds about God in his life. Paul had a rough childhood and went through many foster homes. Through that experience he developed a lot of trauma and many triggers. As a young adult Paul began using drugs and was drinking to suppress the pain. He had a near death experience at 17 where he realized that there is life after death and the choice was his. “That was the day that God spoke to my heart.” Paul ended up in prison due to some bad choices and got sentenced to 46 years to life. “After 10 years in prison, I was sick of the person I had become and I got on my knees and prayed. God, please help me change my ways!” And he meant it - he was ready and had a sincere desire to change. He started serving God, leaving all of the bad choices in prison behind. “I dropped out of prison politics, started reading my bible, praying, and things started changing. The power through the Bible, the Word of God changed my life and I held on with both hands!” Our director, Randy Haskins, went into the prison Paul was at and shared his personal story and about New Beginnings. Paul was intrigued when he heard Randy speak because they could relate. He got a parole hearing and got accepted into New Beginnings. “I didn't realize how overwhelming it would be after getting out after 21 years - that's 2 decades!” When he was released he was at an absolute loss with all that has changed in the world since he was put away. Imagine being stumped at how to flush a toilet, use an ATM, check an email, or even work a cell phone. Basic necessities in our times. It was like being dumped in a different world. “It felt like I was eating an elephant, I had to take little bites one at a time.” While he was at New Beginnings, he learned to navigate the technology of the current times, got a firm foundation in the Bible - Gods word, got his drivers license, ID, birth certificate, and a job! He is now employed outside of New Beginnings and will be graduating soon. Paul states, “What worked for me at New Beginnings was self accountability. Sobriety classes gave me the head knowledge but New Beginnings gave me a look into my own heart - the root of it.” Paul's desire after graduating is to continue to give back, help others find hope and point people to God. “The same God that saved my life wants to do it for them too.” We have been blessed to help Paul get on his feet and see the Lord work in his life.
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