Saul deepens relationship with God, finds love, purpose at Mission

Saul struggled after his mother’s untimely death.

Saul struggled after his mother’s untimely

He’s restoring his bonds with his children

Saul had a relatively quiet childhood growing up in San Diego with his siblings and both parents. He graduated high school and then ITT Tech. At 19, he had his first child, a daughter, and would go on to add four more children to his family.

When Saul’s mother, to whom he was very close, passed away, his life began to change. Though Saul had experimented with marijuana when he was 13, he began to use meth to help numb the pain of the loss. “I didn’t really care much about my life after (her death),” Saul recalled tearfully. “Everything went downhill. There were times I wanted to kill myself.”

Saul’s drug use increased, and he ultimately separated from his girlfriend, though he keeps in contact with his children. In 2008, Saul moved to the Central Coast for a fresh start with his twin brother. He found a good job and was clean for five years. But when he lost his job due to layoffs, he began using meth again. “It was this revolving door. I would stop, then start again. Then stop and start again.”

Saul hoped he’d move in with his family again, but due to his drug use, found himself with nowhere to go. “My family told me that they loved me and that they always would, but that they couldn’t help me, and that it was time for me to get up on my own feet and figure it out, for both me and my kids.”

After a year living under the Santa Maria bridge and surviving by criminal activity, Saul was done. “I kept thinking, ‘I’m tired of living this way. I’m not supposed to be out here this way.’ I wanted to be good. I asked God to show me the way back to him, back to good, and he delivered me.

“I was under the bridge, and I heard God speak to me clearly, ‘Get Up. Get Up!’ I got on my bike, and it led me to the Mission.”

At the Mission Saul has developed a deeper relationship with God and found a safe, loving community. “I could feel the Holy Spirit as soon as I walked in. It’s full of brotherly love. You feel the love here, the encouragement.”

Saul hopes to help in outreach once he graduates the program. “I want to show people what God has done for me. Plus, I like to evangelize, to tell people what God took me out of. If God did it for me, he could do it for them.”

Saul has made amends with his family, especially his children, and they speak regularly. “I’ve had to do a lot of reflecting and a lot of unlearning. I’m so happy. I have so much peace now.” And Saul wants that for others.

“If you want to have a better life, I recommend coming to this program. It will help you. I am proof of that and a testament to God’s love. Expect all the love that you never had before.”