By Lex McMillan

He’s walked a painful path for most of his 51 years, but since finding his way to the Adams Rescue Mission a few months ago, he feels like he’s found a home where God’s love surrounds him.  Although he doesn’t plan to stay for long, he is grateful for the blessings and support. He’s active in a local church and is enjoying his work at the Mission. When he was working at a local restaurant in high school, the manager guided him to get a scholarship for a culinary school where he earned his chef’s credentials.  He recently started cooking for the residents at the Mission.

He is the youngest of six children. Both of his parents were alcoholics, and his father died when he was only five.  Although he expressed gratitude for his mother, he noted that she never worked outside the home; she relied on the children’s Social Security Income. After his father’s death, his mother had a long-term relationship with a man who was a “father figure.”  Much later, he learned that this man had molested this new ARM resident’s young son when the boy was about eight years old.

His mother threw him out of their home when he was 17.  He met a younger girl and had a baby boy with her.  That relationship ended when he discovered that his girlfriend was having sex with an older man.  Although she was granted child custody, he faithfully paid child support until his son was 18 and has maintained a loving relationship with his son, who is now in his 30s.

He married for the first time in his 30s and has three daughters from that relationship, which ended in divorce after 12 years.  He has no relationship with his former wife or his daughters. Their mother has told them that he is dead.

He is currently pursuing a divorce from his second wife, who, like him was a “heavy drinker.”  He describes that relationship as “17 years of roughness.” They have been married nine years.  Earlier this year, they had a drunken altercation that resulted in him spending 15 days in jail for assault, being on probation, and paying off $4000 in fines.  The arresting officer, who was familiar with him and his wife from previous incidents, told him he needed to get away from his wife.  After getting out of jail, he did not return home but went to a nearby shelter where he learned about the Adams Rescue Mission.

He candidly acknowledges that he’s an alcoholic, but he’s been sober for four months.  When he was in his early 30s, he was diagnosed as having a bipolar disorder.  He takes medication for this condition and receives disability income.

Learning to rely on God’s mercy, he has found joy at ARM. He also has learned to be more responsible and accountable and feels healthier than he has in a long time.  He has located a small apartment that he can afford with state housing support and wants to complete his divorce.  He feels that he is healing both physically and spiritually.

The Adams Rescue Mission exists to proclaim the passion of Jesus toward the hungry, homeless, abused, and addicted; to accelerate recovery and restoration to the least, last, lonely, and lost.  Lex McMillan is a board member of ARM.

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