When God transforms lives, He does more than just upgrade us. He makes all things new. Our lives are made new to the point that they are almost unrecognizable from the past. Tim experienced this power of God firsthand. Here is how his life was totally made new.
I used to be addicted to drugs because I found comfort and happiness in them, but the satisfaction was always short-lived and the consequences were destructive. By the grace of God, I was given a new chance to turn away from my past and walk in righteousness. I became serious in pursuing Jesus and turning away from my old ways. I joined a faith-based rehabilitation center for substance abuse named Penuel Home for two months.
By August 2016, I finished the relapse prevention program and decided to relocate to Metro Manila with my wife and one-year old daughter. We needed a fresh start by leaving our laidback life in the province of Aurora.
In our search for a new life, my family and I encountered many challenges. First, we were in lack. I was unemployed, finding a decent job was difficult for me, and my family did not have enough savings to cover our needs and emergencies. Second, we did not have a home. We could not find a house that was affordable and conducive for us to live in, so we stayed in the residence of my wife’s parents for a while. Lastly, I found myself lacking as a father. I want to be a good leader in the family and lead my child to God’s ways, but I had a hard time because I came from a broken family and I did not have a godly father growing up.
When I was left with nothing but family and faith, God showed me in 2017 that He was powerful, merciful, and generous. I remember Him using my wife to show me a verse:
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (Romans 8:18, ESV)
At the start of 2017, God also impressed a verse in my heart as we prayed and fasted.
Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy. (Isaiah 61:7, ESV)
This verse assured me that the grace of God is generous enough to provide for me as I faithfully believe in His promises. From then on, I made a commitment to God to give a tenth of everything I have. God also revealed to me that I should swallow my pride and apply to work for my father-in-law’s business. This decision was a blessing in disguise for us. My new job drew our families together and helped me provide for my family.
God did not only bless us with what we need, but also gave us our hearts’ desires. I am still in awe on how we survived our financial challenges last year, which includes my wife’s second pregnancy and my daughter’s hospitalization. He even surpassed our need for a home by giving us a brand new and fully furnished condominium unit! Back then, I asked God, “Lord, I know it is your will for us to leave and cleave as a couple, and have a place we could call our own as our family, but why could we not find it now?” And a year later, He answered my question with a home of our own!
At my job, God provided unexpected clients for the business. We also had the privilege of a family vacation abroad with my in-laws! Just when we thought we received a lot, God also blessed our family with another baby who was born on my birthday. When God gives, He truly gives generously.
God also surrounded us with a loving spiritual family that helped us grow in our relationship with Him. My wife and I are now part of a Victory group. Now, He is also using me to minister to other drug dependents and those who turned back on the faith. As a father, God also gave me wisdom to parent my children. I was able to teach my daughter how to pray recently.
God truly blessed us above and beyond through the unexpected people in my life. In spite of everything, the best blessing is still His presence whether in trials or success. I felt like everyday was a gift and a new beginning.
I used to be a drug dependent who always failed in life, but God is always there not just to forgive me, but also to love and provide with me everything I need.