I thought I would share with everyone about my accident and the weekend it happened. I had been invited to the Freeman's cabin, amazing friends that are more like family from Tacoma. The cabin was in Orville WA. I invited some friends to come along for the weekend to enjoy the snow, snowmobiling, hot tub, and great vacation time. We were all so excited to go and as we started the trip our excitement grew. The drive was beautiful! My brother and I marveled at the bigness and beauty of our God who created this amazing place we live in. It was close to a 5 hour trip and because we were so far "out there" we lost service for a majority of the drive, in turn loosing out navigation. It was fun and came back before we really needed it. We arrived at the cabin Friday December 28th. It was great to seeing friends and meeting new ones. We were excited to get on the mountain so we didn't waste time. A group of us got on the snowmobiles, took a quick crash course on driving, and were off. The beauty of this place was unlike any I had ever seen before. We made it to the top, where we witnessed a sight that made me start to yell with excitement. We were above the cloud line and with mountain peaks surrounding us, we watched the sun set. The setting sun created what seemed to be a fire in the sky reflecting off clouds below. All I could say or yell really was "HOLY CRAP GOD, YOU ARE SOOO GOOD AND SOOO BIG"!!!! I was in awe of the grandiosity of what God had created and in that moment I felt him say, "it was all for you". My heart melted and I began to just praise him. We made out way down the mountain back to the cabin to enjoy some great food, friends, games and the HOT TUB! I have to give it up to Dan and Milt who worked tirelessly to fix the hot tub for us, thank you! The night was amazing! As we all enjoyed the night, friendships seemed to turn into more like family. We shared our stories, hearts, dreams, and boasted on Jesus. When it was time to go to bed, I laid there marveling at where I was and who I was with. I felt so at home and looking back I know God was making supernatural bonds between all of us who were at the cabin. The next day when I woke up I felt pretty close to the same as when I went to bed. We ate a great breakfast and read some morning devotionals and relaxed. I have to say again thank you to Val and Sheryl for the hard work and amazing food!! We went out on a morning drive on the snowmobiles and loved every minute of it. I had brought a snowboard a long so that I could do a little riding. I had gotten to go behind a snowmobile a little but what I really had wanted to do was build a jump somewhere. I always loved doing that in the past. I love the snow and the outdoors and the scenery in back country is my favorite. I had looked around a little the day before for a place that looked good and found one. So in the late morning my brother, friend Daniel, and I got dropped off to build the jump and hang out. It was great. We had a blast laughing and joking together and would stop every so often to soak in God's creation. The place where I had decided to build the jump was over a snowmobile road. It wasn't too far, it had like a 35 foot gap. Something in my younger years I would consider small. It had been awhile since I had ridden hard at all but I figured this was just right in where my skill set probably was. After I made the jump I tried it and didn't quite get far enough. It didn't hurt too bad but the jump needed to be a little bigger and the runway a little longer. So we made the modifications and got ready for round 2. I went off the jump again and this time everything went wrong. I am pretty sure that half of the jump collapsed when I went off it, based on the pictures I saw after. We aren't exactly too sure what happened but what seemed to have happened is I didn't make the gap and I turned a little in the air. When I landed on the hard compact snow I was leaning forward and it my head hit the transition for road to hill knocking me out. The momentum flung my body forward over the road and onto the hill. When I came to and my back hurt and I couldn't feel my legs I was pretty sure I knew exactly what had happened. From growing up snowboarding and landing on flat hard ground before I knew the risks. I knew that I had probably broken by back and I had a good hunch that my legs were paralyzed. I was filled with fear immediately. I don't remember every detail but I remember just asking people to pray and saying Jesus over and over and over. We were waiting for the paramedics to arrive and most everyone was gathered around me praying. Friends were holding my hands to comfort me, while others laid hands on me and were crying out for The Lord. I remember looking into the eyes of my friend who was holding my hand trying comfort me and all of a sudden my friends started worshiping. At that moment Jesus showed up and changed everything about how I was feeling, who I was before, who I was at that time, and I who I will forever be. I felt this peace fall on me. A peace that truly surpasses all understanding. I knew in that moment everything was going to be ok because God has me. Since that moment I have never known more that I am in His hands. God did a rapid maturing in my heart and mind in that short time. I experienced freedom from things that I had been struggling with and cleared everything that had been in the way of our relationship. His mercy still blows me away. I was on that hill side for close to 3 hours waiting, just because we were so far out there and it wasn't very accessible. I sledded down to the ambulance and was taken to the nearest hospital. There they realized they couldn't do much for me there and I needed to go to Sacred Heart in Spokane. They couldn't air lift me so I was going to have to make the drive. After that news, people started praying and the funniest thing happened. The weather lifted for just enough time for me to get on an airplane and get to Spokane, and it don't last a minute longer. Thank you Jesus! Sacred Heart doctors told me that I had severely broken by back and damaged my spinal cord. I had surgery the next day and after my follow ups with my surgeon I found out that I would never walk again. But my God is the ultimate physician. He is going to heal me. I will walk. He has said it and what he says is truth that surpasses any facts. I don't know when that day will be but with all the great things he has done and is doing in this situation, I trust that whenever that day comes it will be just the perfect time!
When I was back in jail I was honestly pretty shocked. I went to my PO for help and this was the answer? I was pretty hurt. I was devastated when I received my paperwork from my PO with her recommendation to my judge. She asked that I go back to prison and do more programming. I couldn't believe it. This was a hard time for me because I knew I was different than I was before. I truly believed I made a mistake, a huge one, but I don't believe I was going to turn back into that old person. I was a new creation. I didn't know what to do. I was faced with some challenges. Do I go back to survival mode and prison mentality like last time I was incarcerated? I decided to believe what the bible said about me. I decided that I would put on my new nature that God had given me. So I stayed out of the "politics" of jail. I started a bible study and a nightly prayer circle. It was pretty hard, they both started with just me. My time there was filled with reading the word, serious intercession, and still some cards haha. I saw something strange happen. My bible study started to grow and the prayer circle blew up. I found myself walking laps with people just listening to their story, just loving them. By the time I left there were no fights, a miracle, the bible study had a consistent 15 people, and the prayer circle was filled with most of the 50 inmates in my pod. I saw people get saved, miracles happen, and many prayers answered in totally supernatural ways. It was crazy!!!! God did a major thing in my pod, something I had never seen before. When I went to court, the court room was packet with support. I had people from all over come and support me. The judge took notice, and had mercy. He decided to not do what my PO wanted and instead let me do a faith based treatment in CDA. I went to the Good Samaritan Rehabilitation program. It was 2 months of hanging out with Jesus and getting in his word. The entire time I was there God showed me so many things about his character that I had seemed to just skip over. For example, the fear of The Lord. I kind of missed that one and it's a big deal. Truly understanding and getting revelation on that helped me build a strong foundation in my relationship with Him. I learned all about submitting to authority, even when I don't agree, in the best way possible. How he truly has placed all authority, and submitting to that is honoring him and another form of worship. I could go on and on about the awesome things he showed me in our quiet times together. Since I graduated the program God has opened and closed so many doors. It has been great! I am teaching a class about freedom at that same rehab, teaching bible study's, leading a discipleship home, and all sorts of things I would have never imagined. God has saved me from so much. I am eternally grateful for all the things he has done for and through me. He did all this for me when I didn't want it. He saved me in spite of my rebellion and resentments towards him. He is so good! I have hurt so many people through out my story. He has been redeeming so much, replacing the years the locust have eaten away. I still sometimes hurt because of the things I've done but when I take off the old nature and out on the new one, I am able to grieve what I have done but have Godly sorrow which leads to life.
This is the krux of my story up until the accident. I hope something has grabbed ahold of your heart.
I left off my in my story where I was about to encounter The Lord in a way that would change my life forever. He did it during a time when that was the last thing I wanted and thought I needed. It happened when I was in Spokane county jail waiting for a transfer. I had no idea when that would come. All anyone would tell me is that Whitman county had 60 days to come and get me. Because I was waiting transport, I never left intake. I was in a cell 24 hours a day with no shoes!!! I worked out to pass time but with no shower and just a sink to clean myself it was pretty awful. Intake is medical isolation as well. There were people who were sick and people with mental illness in the cells next to me. There was constant screaming and crying day and night. I had blood stains on my walls. It was the worst experience I've ever had. I had different roommates that would be there for just one night. All sorts of people came through. One had smuggled drugs in and used the night to get them, which was quite grows. I had been there for 4 days when I couldn't take it any more. I had a "wrestling" match with God, like Jacob. I didn't hold anything back. I told him how I really felt in the language that best described how I felt. I told him about all the wrongs he had done to me and let him know that it was his fault I was where I was. After I had no more tears, words left, or a voice, something broke. I started repenting for thing I've never admitted out loud and started praying for my family and what ever He put on my heart to pray. I woke up the next day a different person. I no longer wanted to do the things I used to. Everything in my heart had changed. I spent the next three days reciting scripture I had once memorized, and praying and worshiping The Lord. I was there for a total of 7 days. As soon as I was transferred I was released at the other county. When I was released I wanted to be different but still struggled for a few months with drugs. God being so faithful broke in again to show me the how. I became plugged in with my church and started running as fast as I could toward The Lord. Close to year after my release for jail I had become so prideful in my relationship with Christ. I see how in so many ways I became Ike one of the pharacies. I thought I knew the right way to pray, they right way to minister, I had it figured out. Because of my pride and with the help of a couple unhealthily relationships I relapsed. God don't let me get to far and just asked me a simple question. He asked if I really wanted to go back to how it used to be. I didn't. So I did something I have never done before I, I told on myself. I told my pastor, discipler, family, and my probation officer. All were very supportive and wanted to help. My PO however, wanted to help in a different way. After I told her what was going on I found myself, once again, back in jail.
More to come.
There are probably a lot of people who are walking this journey with me who know my story and the things I've been through. I also think that there are a lot who might not. I would love for everyone to know my story and what Christ has done in my life. We do overcome by the blood of the lamb and the word of our testimony. I am going to stay away from super detailed stories just because I want to focus on what God has done and it would be way too long haha. I was raised in an amazing family with parents who love Jesus. They did the best they know how to raise us up in a Godly home. It wasn't perfect. We weren't the best at confrontation and kind of swept things under the rug but love and support was always so strong in my home. I thank God every day for the amazing parents and family I have. I went to private Christian school 1-8 grades. I learned so much there, about God and his word, as well as good study habits and working hard in school. For high school I went to CHS, Coeur d'Alene High School. I mainly went there for sports. I excelled in soccer and wrestling, mostly soccer. I learned a lot there too. Mostly about how to get decent grades with as little work as possible, skipping class, partying, drugs, girls and all sorts of stuff. It was quite a stark contrast to my private school days. Very soon image, social status, being the best soccer player, having the cutest girl, and being the coolest guy around were my priorities. I was doing really well at them too. But now I can see how I really felt back then. Nothing ever really satisfied, or not for very long at least. Nothing was ever good enough for me. I had to be cooler, better at soccer, needed at hotter girl, whatever. I also got in a lot of trouble. I got a DUI my senior year in Highschool. That hurt in so many ways. I had a lot of people looking up to me and I let them down. I got suspended from soccer and my title as captain taken away. I worked my butt off to show everyone how sorry I was. I developed a view that working hard is how I show everyone I mean I am sorry. Which can be good but not when I turned it into what I did. Which was making up for mistakes with hard work and not truly repenting for what I had done. I graduated Highschool and went to college. I received a full ride scholarship for soccer and was quite proud of what I had done for myself. My college experience was like Highschool but bigger. More parties, girls, and athletic accomplishments, and it still wasn't truly fulfilling. I could get into details of the stories of my partying and stuff but I want to make sure I don't glorify any of the things used to do. In Highschool I dabbled in drugs and sold a little bit but in college I tried a drug called OxyContin. It truly grabbed a hold of me my life changed dramatically. I remember the first time I did it I said that if I could feel like that all the time I would. I thought it what was that fulfillment I had been looking for. I got hooked right away. I started selling it so that I could support my habit for free. After two years of college and soccer, excelling at both, I decided I wanted the lifestyle of selling and doing drugs more. I walked away from soccer, my life, and college. I just quit showing up to both. I started down a path that I had no idea would lead me down years of hurt and pain. That fulfillment I thought I had found quickly became something was different. During my addiction I became someone I never thought I'd be capable of becoming. Every little piece of morality I had left was gone. I became consumed in selfishness. I was committing crimes, robbing, steeling, and manipulating everything and everyone I could. That included friends and even my own family. I was in and out of treatments and different facilities. I moved around to try and get away but everywhere I went there I was. I couldn't run away from me. I became so wrapped up in shame and condemnation. I always tried going back to the guy I used to be before the drugs and could never do it. During that time I lost so much! God has restored so much but it has been a long process and there are a lot of friends and people I hurt that still need a lot of reconciliation. The entire time God was calling me. I would try and answer but there was always something I was unwilling to surrender and I wouldn't seek him long. I finally found myself in jail facing an abundance of different charges. My first time in jail I was incarcerated for 11 months and part of that was in prison. The situation didn't make me run to God, I just became more of a victim. I got consumed with the "prison mentality". When I had served my time and thought I was getting out, I found out that I had a warrant in WA and was transported there. It was there where I finally had an encounter with God that was honest, powerful and changed my life forever.
More to come:)