Your support took Neil from searching for answers to taking part in what God is doing. In his words, “Thank you, Jesus!”
Neil moved from Trinidad to Washington, D.C. with his mom when he was young. In the 70s, drugs flooded the D.C. area and he was caught up in it. Throughout his life, Neil searched for the truth. “I always knew there was a God and I searched in a lot of different places,” he said. “I practiced Islam for about 27 years.”
He needed to leave D.C. and chose to go to Florida. It was there that Neil arrived at rock bottom. “I had just finished spending all my money on crack. I dropped down on my knees and I said, ‘Jesus, if you’re real, help me.’ I didn’t feel anything… Nothing happened as far as I knew.”
But a few days later, he had saved some money, which was surprising. Typically, he couldn’t hold on to money. Neil explains, “If I had $10, five was going to be on crack and the other five I’m going to try figure out how [to take care of my] three kids.” He soon realized he hadn’t been looking for crack at all. The desire was gone: Something had happened. Neil even started wanting to go to church! In time, though, he fell away from following Jesus.
Later, the love of his life left him and moved to Bellingham, because their grown son was living at the Mission’s Drop-In Center. Neil followed her.
“I appreciate Bellingham because of the Lighthouse Mission… I have my own place now.”
He stayed at the Drop-In Center to be near both of them and soon was invited in to the men’s recovery program. Neil dove right into the classes and community.
Neil didn’t think he needed help emotionally, but the program helped him see otherwise. “I realized that I had some hidden issues and all that came to light. I stayed in that program for one year… People put on a big persona, like they don’t need nobody, but we are all broken people,” said Neil.
The Mission supported Neil and his loved one while she was going through serious health issues.
Neil shares that the Mission increased his faith and his trust in God. “The Mission helped me to see God in action [and] be a part of what God is doing.”
Neil began serving the Lord by driving Mission guests to the church of their choice in the Mission van. He also drives men to Band of Brothers meetings, volunteering several times a week to do that! “I want other people to experience what happened to me,” Neil shared.
“If it wasn’t for the Lighthouse Mission, I would have been in the dire straits in Bellingham.”
“If I was just to have one person to say thank you, I’ll say thank you Jesus,” he said. “It’s all about Jesus.”
Today Neil is flourishing in his own place and his son lives with him. Thank you for helping Neil and his family!