Mark's Story

Breaking the cycle and finding community

“I get the honour of being on Liberty Farm, helping men and seeing their lives change.”

I was 30 years old when I had my first hip replacement. Years of steroid and drug abuse were the cause of the problem – it’s just one of those things that can happen.
But in the years after that replacement I thought everything was going to be fine. I was a born again Christian, I had a wife, a child on the way, a house, a job, a ministry. Everything was good.

One day I called in sick to work. After three days of agony I was admitted to hospital for tests and doctors found that my hips were massively defective. I would need new replacements. 

Over the next year of my life both hips were changed again and, during the operation, some nerves were damaged. I needed painkillers, but I knew that as an ex-opiate addict I was in danger of getting back into the cycle of addiction again.

I tried my best to keep going, to minimise use, and to hide what I was doing, but it slowly began to affect everything. My work, my relationships and my marriage all suffered, until it got too much. I soon switched into full addiction, trying to cover up my problem with more drugs. I became a wreck fast. It was horrible. 

“Incredibly, no one at Walk treated me like a failure. They spoke into my life and reminded me of the unchangeable and unconditional love of God.”

In the weeks before I met Simon and the team at Walk I had separated from my wife, spent £20,000 on drugs and ended up in hospital after a cocaine overdose. By the time I met Simon I was a total mess and I felt like a leper, someone completely untouchable and unworthy of love.

Incredibly, no one at Walk treated me like a failure. They spoke into my life and reminded me of the unchangeable and unconditional love of God. When your whole world is falling to pieces and you find people who are not afraid to touch you in your brokenness, like Jesus did, it changes absolutely everything.

They left me with the dignity of who I was in Christ, but they did not leave me where I was. At Walk I was welcomed into community, and suddenly, through my worst failure I found everything that I was looking for.
Now I get the honour of being on Liberty Farm, helping men and seeing their lives change as they discover the love of God for themselves.

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