“Somebody my grandma can be proud of.”
Lonny started drinking from his dad’s beer cans at 8 years old, and was an alcoholic by age 10.
“My mom was a drug addict and my dad was an alcoholic, so it’s just what I’ve known since I was little.”
Lonny’s parents divorced, and he was raised by his dad and abusive stepmom. He spent more than 20 years drinking and using drugs to cover up the pain. His grandma was the only person he could count on to love him no matter what he did or how bad things got.
His turning point came when he was released from prison and became homeless. Lonny came to Holland Rescue Mission and his entire outlook changed when he developed a real relationship with God.
“When things were rough, I used to call upon God. When things were good, I handled everything myself… or so I thought, till God placed me at the Mission.”
“As a man, having to admit that you’re homeless and you need help is hard to do sometimes.”
Lonny entered our Gateway long-term recovery program, and in addition to his daily classes and counseling sessions, the Lord laid it upon his heart to serve others.
“I used to be a very selfish person. But then I became that guy talking with people and praying for somebody when they needed it. It was a good feeling for me.”
Other staff members and guests took note of Lonny’s actions, and he was soon asked to be a residential assistant. The Lord then opened up a position on staff, and today Lonny serves as a Ministry Support Coordinator, working with guests who have mental health issues.
“God put me through all the worst possible things in my life so today, right now, He can use me as a gift to help another man who is going through trouble in his life.”
Because of your generosity, Lonny’s heart has been filled with thanksgiving… and God’s love! “Since coming to the Mission, I’m a messenger and a warrior of God. I’m somebody my grandma can be proud of.”