Lori Meadows baptizing one of the ladies she’s invested in.
By Carl Stagner
Often derided and dismissed, they’re considered the fringe of society. In chains and often in danger, they stand in need of rescue. Made beautifully in the image of God but scarred within, they are the “least of these” and must not be ignored. That’s what Lori Meadows recognized while riding the roller coaster of emotions when her daughter was nearly swallowed up by the quicksand of drug abuse several years ago. While walking alongside her daughter, God opened her eyes to the brutal world of women suffering from addiction. In time, she and the ministry she founded called Recovery Warriors became inextricably connected to Southridge Church, the Church of God congregation in South Charleston, West Virginia. In mid-November, the church hosted a spiritually potent “Beauty Day” for the ladies of the local recovery home. The occasion was yet another reminder that these “warriors” are totally committed to giving West Virginia women a second chance. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Give Life, Northeast
Tagged addiction recovery, baptism, Beauty Day, Charleston, community, drug abuse, drug addiction, drugs, Give Life, healing, Kentucky, ladies, life change, Lori Meadows, outreach, recovery, Recovery Point, Recovery Warriors, rehab, rehabilitation, salvation, Scott Beha, service project, South Charleston, Southridge Church, substance abuse, testimony, transformation, wellness, West Virginia, women, WV
Pastor Ray Hodges preaching the gospel at Resolute Church.
By Carl Stagner
Ray Hodges had personal experience with church; he’d never had personal experience with the risen Christ. Growing up Catholic, he’d acknowledged the existence of God but would confess there was no relationship with Jesus. Even when he began attending the Iglesia de Dios (Church of God) with his girlfriend, it was the kindness of the people, the lively music, and the relatable preaching that he came to know and love. Without the foundation of Christ in his life, the allure of drugs and parties soon became too much to bear. Thankfully, the patience and persistent prayers of his wife and pastor over Ray’s fifteen-year addiction paid off when Jesus Christ gloriously redeemed his painful past for a future of purpose and promise. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Central
Tagged addiction, addiction recovery, barber, Bill Banda, church growth, church multiplication, church plant, church planting, Corpus Christi, drug abuse, drug addiction, drugs, ethnic, Gilbert Davila, Hispanic, intervention, life change, Michelle Hodges, mistakes, multi-ethnic, multiculural, multiplication, pain, past, patience, persistence, personal, prayer, Ray Hodges, recovery, redemption, Resolute Church, restoration, story, testimony, Texas, transformation, TX, unconditional love
Tami Dean (photo courtesy Billy Watkins).
By Billy Watkins
It doesn’t take long to find someone who needs addiction recovery. “Just look in the mirror,” says Rev. Calvin D. Waddy Jr., of Central Community Church of God in west Jackson, Mississippi. “When we hear the word recovery, we automatically think about drugs, alcohol or gambling. But everyone—and I do mean everyone—needs recovery of some sort.” Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Give Life, Southeast
Tagged addiction recovery, Billy Watkins, Calvin Waddy, Celebrate Recovery, Central Community Church of God, Clarion-Ledger, drug addiction, freedom, Give Life, Jackson, Mississippi, MS, newspaper, reclaim what hell has stolen, Tami Dean, testimony
By Carl Stagner
“If it weren’t for this ministry, that needle would be back in my arms.” The sentiment of the women of Solid Rock Ministries in The Dalles, Oregon, echoes often in the mind of Pastor Ken Post. He says there’s nothing like watching these ladies become so addicted to Jesus Christ that drugs simply lose their former appeal. Following a brief “retirement” from the pastorate, Ken returned to the church he’d once pastored, which now was hurling toward the end of its life cycle. Though Ken was advised to shut the church down, he felt the Spirit tugging him to reorganize the operation into a refuge for women recovering from addiction. Solid Rock would still be a church, but no longer just another church in a community already saturated with churches. Its chief purpose would be to rescue and restore women in desperate need of a U-turn. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Western
Tagged addiction recovery, drug addiction, Freedom House, Ken Post, Oregon, outreach, restoration, Solid Rock Church of God, Solid Rock Ministries, The Dalles, women
By Carl Stagner
Heroin use may be more pervasive than you think. Statistics estimate that as many as 900,000 people regularly take heroin in the United States alone.* Because heroin doesn’t discriminate based on age, gender, race, or location, it’s likely that you may know someone who has either tried heroin or is affected by heroin abuse in some way. Relative to other drugs, heroin is inexpensive, especially addictive, and overdose generally leads to death. Of all the counties in Ohio, Clinton County is the sixth highest county in heroin overdose deaths. Unable to ignore the epidemic, First Church of God in the Clinton County community of Wilmington joined several other local churches to seek solutions. The results were of eternal consequence. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Great Lakes
Tagged baptism, community, drug addiction, evangelism, First Church of God, Hope Over Heroin, Larry Speelman, Ohio, outreach, rally, recovery, salvation, testimony, Wilmington