I was born in 1957, baptised as a catholic, and spent the first 16 years of my life growing up on a dairy farm. My father drank a qiute a bit at times, and I suffered verbal and physical abuse most could not imagine. Often times he would come home drunk and not like the way something was done, or be angry over something that had happened. If I was lucky he would only threaten to beat me, and often times he would tell me to say good bye to my mother because he was taking me to a reformatory. Countless times I was severely beaten with anything handy, from electrical cords to milk hoses. At the age of 16 1/2 I joined the army to get away from him. When I went into the army I had tried pot and speed, but by the time I got out two years later I had done everything but stick a needle in my arm. Within a year after getting out I was shooting cocaine into my veins, and involved in several burglaries and other crimes to support my habit. I also spent time in and out of jail on drug charges. In the fall of 1981, instead of appearing in court on charges of auto theft, I hopped on a bus and left the state. I ended up in Phoenix Az, sleeping in a cardboard box on the streets at night, and giving blood once a week to buy some wine or drugs. We used to go to the local gospel mission to get a hot meal once a day. It was there that I first heard the gospel preached. On Nov 19'th 1981 I asked the Lord Jesus Christ into my heart after hearing a message titled "where is your family" and began to see the Lord move in awesome ways. Two years later I called the district attorney where they had a warrant out for my arrest for car theft and burglary, and informed him that I was coming back to turn myself in, knowing that I was probably looking at no less than 5 years in the state prison. The hand of God continued to move in my life even as I pled guilty to the charges filed against me. And I believe the hand of God was upon the judge as he made his pre sentence statement before a courtroom full of people. In his statement he said.... After talking to the district attorney, and being informed that you called to let him know you were coming back to turn yourself in, I believe you are making an attempt to straighten out your life. I sentence you to 100 hours of community service, a 100.00 fine, court costs, and restitution.
"Restitution claims were never filed, so I never had to pay any"
Some day I will stand before another judge, but instead of pleading guilty I will be able to say...
MY KING, MY KING, DIED IN MY PLACE!
And again I will owe no restitution!