When Larry looks back on the parts of his life that felt reckless and hopeless, regret tries to creep in. He remembers addiction and homelessness taking over, and how he paid the price with his health, his relationships and his life. “Now, I’m where I need to be,” he shares with a newfound confidence. “The past is irrelevant. Today is what I have.” Larry grew up in a Christian home, but when at a young age he witnessed a violent crime against his mother, his desire to protect people grew to an extreme level. After discovering that alcohol could numb his fears, he rebelled against his parents – and even his faith in Christ – which led to homelessness in his teens. When serving in the military couldn’t save him, and with a bad reputation following him, Larry’s drinking became worse. He even considered suicide. At his lowest point, he was found nearly dead in a snowbank, which was the wakeup call of a lifetime. “It was the Lord’s presence that saved me. I needed to find help from a place that had God in its workings.” The day he walked into Rescue Mission of Utica, everything changed for Larry.
“When I arrived, I was greeted with joy… and a sincere, ‘Thank God you’re here.’” “I once was asleep in the Lord, and now I’m resting in Him.” Through meetings, outpatient counseling and church involvement, Larry has built a supportive network of people who are on the same spiritual journey. “All my friends are Christians who are in recovery. I finally feel like I belong, and I know who’s got my back.” Larry has a strong desire to live his best life and give back through leadership. He starts each day with Bible study and prayer, and is eager to hear God’s Word shared by others. “Through Christ, I know there’s nothing I can’t do. And He’s done all of this for me because of His love.” Larry is thankful for the way you have answered God’s calling to love your neighbor as yourself – and have helped him learn how to love himself. “I hope I can inspire those who are still struggling to turn away from a life of fear. After all, everything is in God’s hands.”